A look at the top Covid-19 developments of the day:

  1. The reproduction rate, or R value, of Covid-19 in India was recorded at 2.2 between January 7 and 13, a drop from the previous two weeks, PTI reported, citing a preliminary analysis by Indian Institutes of Technology Madras. The R Value of Mumbai was 1.3, Delhi 2.5, Chennai 2.4 and Kolkata 1.6. The R value measures how many people are being infected by one Covid-positive person on an average. The number of infections keeps rising if the R value is more than 1. If the value declines, the infection will eventually stop spreading. It was close to 2.9 between December 25 and December 31, while it was 4 between January 1 and January 6. 
  2. As India marked one year of the country’s coronavirus inoculation drive on Sunday, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya launched a postage stamp to commemorate the occasion. So far, India has administered 1,57,06,96,006 vaccine doses, according to the government’s CoWin portal. As many as 65,60,11,893 people have received both the jabs and 42,98,070 booster doses have been administered. 
  3. Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said that the coronavirus cases in the national Capital have started reducing in last three days and that the government was looking at a substantial decrease in infections in the next few days, reported ANI. He added that the case positivity rate is also likely to decline.
  4. The Jharkhand government has decided to extend the coronavirus restrictions in the state till January 31, reported ANI. Under the existing restrictions, all educational institutions will remain closed and official work will be permitted with a 50% capacity. All stadiums, parks, gyms, swimming pools, tourist destinations will remain closed.
  5. The Tamil Nadu government has shut down schools for all classes due to an increase in coronavirus cases in the state, reported ANI. The government said that the exams which were supposed to be held on January 19 have been postponed.
  6. Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij said that 50% of around 9,000 daily Covid-19 cases registered in the state every day were from Gurugram, Faridabad and Sonipat cities, reported ANI. He added that 7 lakh children aged between 15-18 years have been vaccinated in the state and those who have not received the jabs will not be allowed to attend physical classes in educational institutions.
  7. India registered 2,71,202 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday morning, taking the overall tally to 3,71,22,164 since the pandemic began in the country in January 2020. The number of new infections was marginally higher than Saturday’s count of 2,68,833 cases. The toll increased to 4,86,066 after 314 patients died in the last 24 hours.
  8. Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in cities across France on Saturday against tighter restrictions on people who are not vaccinated against Covid-19, reported AFP. The French government has deactivated the government-issued “health pass” for unvaccinated people that allowed them entry to public areas such as bars and restaurants. This “health pass” can now potentially be transformed into a “vaccine pass” under a law currently being debated in Parliament. The passing of the law would mean vaccination as a mandatory requirement at public places.
  9.  At least three Chinese provinces and one municipality have found locally-transmitted Omicron variant, with the latest cases being detected in Zhongshan and Zhuhai in South China’s Guangdong Province, reported state-run Global Times, citing health officials. So far, 14 provincial-level places in China have reported Omicron cases. 
  10. The Covax global vaccine-sharing programme has delivered 100 crore, coronavirus vaccine doses around the world, said GAVI, which co-leads the initiative along the World Health Organization, reported Reuters. The programme began delivering vaccine doses in February.