Home >News >India >Mint Covid Tracker: India’s corona trajectory has tapered this week but still remains steeper than Asian peers
Karan Kumar, a daily wage labourer, adjusts his protective mask as he stands inside his quarter at a construction site where activity has been halted due to 21-day nationwide lockdown to slow the spreading of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New Delhi, India, April 10, 2020. (Reuters)
Karan Kumar, a daily wage labourer, adjusts his protective mask as he stands inside his quarter at a construction site where activity has been halted due to 21-day nationwide lockdown to slow the spreading of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New Delhi, India, April 10, 2020. (Reuters)

Mint Covid Tracker: India’s corona trajectory has tapered this week but still remains steeper than Asian peers

Maharashtra, Delhi, and Tamil Nadu have seen the highest spike in cases this week

The number of reported covid-19 cases in India rose 28 percent over the past two days to 6761, data from the ministry of health and family welfare (MoHFW) published last evening showed. This is a faster increase compared to the previous 48 hours, when the reported case count rose 23 percent to 5274.

This week, the number of cases has gone up by 89 percent (between Sunday evening and Friday evening). This is a slower increase compared to the previous five days, when confirmed cases had risen by 159 percent (on a lower base).

Despite the slight tapering this week, India’s trajectory continues to be steeper than several Asian peers such as Singapore, Japan, and even Pakistan. But it is flatter than that of the US, which has emerged as the new epicentre of the global pandemic, with the most number of active cases and deaths at the moment.

India’s case count is now roughly double what it was five days ago. At this trajectory, the number of cases could inch close to 10,000 over the next three days. If the same trajectory continues beyond that period, India’s hospitals could get overwhelmed in the next few months. India’s death toll from covid-19 stands at 206, double what it was five days ago.

At 1,142, Maharashtra leads in terms of the number of active cases of covid-19, according to the health ministry update on Thursday evening. Active cases exclude deaths and recoveries from the list of confirmed cases.

Delhi has the second most number of active cases (860), closely followed by Tamil Nadu (805). At 439 active cases, Rajasthan has the fourth-highest number of active cases, followed closely by Telangana (431). The top five states together account for 61 percent of the active cases nationally. Nationally, the active case count was 6,039, as of yesterday evening.

These are early days yet and the state-wise distribution could change in the coming days. Across the country, the extent of testing done by states and the number of cases that have been identified appear to be linked. To some extent, this may simply reflect the incidence of these cases. However, a recent study by public health researchers suggest that some states with lower testing also have relatively higher fatality rates as they were unable to detect cases early. As testing gets ramped up in some of these states, the number of reported cases could change significantly.

Source: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
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Source: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
Source: State government portals, MoHFW, Mint research
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Source: State government portals, MoHFW, Mint research

This week, Maharashtra, Delhi, and Tamil Nadu have seen the highest spurt in cases. These three states account for 51 percent of all the new active cases this week.

The number of active cases have risen from 424 to 1,142 in Maharashtra, from 478 to 860 in Delhi, and from 476 to 805 in Tamil Nadu between Sunday and Friday evening.

Source: MoHFW
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Source: MoHFW

The top ten districts now account for 37 percent of confirmed cases in the country, data compiled by howindialives.com shows. And the top 50 districts account for roughly 68 percent of the cases.

So far, 363 districts have confirmed cases. Among these districts, Mumbai (847 cases) has reported the most number of cases nationally, followed by South Delhi (307).

Indore (235) in Madhya Pradesh, Pune (202) in Maharashtra, Hyderabad (200) in Telangana, Chennai (172) in Tamil Nadu, Kasargod (166) in Kerala, Jaipur (155) in Rajasthan, Ahmedabad (153) in Gujarat and New Delhi (119) are the other top hotspots in the country.

Source: MoHFW, National Disaster Management Authority and national/regional publications
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Source: MoHFW, National Disaster Management Authority and national/regional publications

More than 1.6 million people have now been detected as covid-19 patients globally even as several parts of the world, including India, have taken severe lockdown measures in a bid to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus that causes covid-19.

Testing criteria in India were stringent so far and tests are being ramped up only now. India’s apex medical science body, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has so far held that community transmission --- or instances of covid-19 in patients who had no contact with someone who had picked it up from abroad --- were rare. But a new study by ICMR scientists and calls for more widespread testing. The health ministry however still maintains that the ICMR study does not prove community transmission since many of the cases were from districts with confirmed cases.

It is likely that cases will continue to rise as testing expands, even if the lockdown has lowered the rate of transmission of the virus. Given the limited testing so far, it is too early to say whether India’s current trajectory will sustain, rise, or flatten in the coming days.

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