Fact check: Did IIT Kanpur predict that 3rd wave of COVID-19 will hit India by July 15
New Delhi, June 25: A post on Facebook has gone viral stating that the third wave of COVID-19 will hit India by July 15. The post reads, 'as per IIT Kanpur Model, 3rd wave can hit India from July 15 onwards. You will note their prediction about the 2nd wave was absolutely correct,' the post says along with a graph.
While the graph was created by two IIT Kanpur professors, the claim being made is not entirely correct. The research conducted by Professors Rajesh Ranjan and Mahendra Verrma lay out three likely scenarios about the third wave based only on the assumption that India will be fully unlocked on July 15. The research also does not take into consideration the effects of the vaccination.
The study (https://www.iitk.ac.in/new/covid-19-outbreak-in-india) lists out three scenarios:
- Scenario 1 (Back-to-Normal):Third wave peak in October but a lower peak height than the second wave.
- Scenario 2 (Normal with virus mutations): The peak could be higher than the second one and may appear early (September).
- Scenario 3 (Stricter interventions):The peak of the third wave could be delayed until late October with strict social distancing. Here, the peak will be lower than the second wave.
There is a significant anxiety among policy makers and public about the third wave. For the same, using SIR model, we have constructed the following three scenarios of a possible third wave using the epidemic parameters of the second wave.We assume that India is fully unlocked on 15 July, the study says.
Vaccination is known to break the transmission chain. At present, the model does not include vaccination, which should decrease the peak significantly. Revised model with vaccination and with more recent data on the same is being worked out, the IIT Kanpur study also says.
After the initial hiccups the vaccination drive has picked up pace. The government said that the entire country would be vaccinated by the end of December 2020. On June 21 over 80 lakh people in the country received vaccination.
IIT Kanpur research has predicted that third wave of COVID-19 will hit India by July 15
The IIT Kanpur paper speaks about likely scenarios based on the assumption that India will be fully unlocked from July 15. Further, the vaccination was not taken into account.