Given the present conditions and fear of Omicron spreading fast, the new COVID-tracking website has been launched by IIT-Hyderabad. It is equipped with several capabilities and will predict the future course of the pandemic. Earlier, there was www.COVID19india.org which was set up in early 2020, when the pandemic struck India, and was the most popular website for such information. However, in August 2021, those maintaining the site stated that they would not be able to update the site beyond October 31, 2021.
Just a couple of days back, IIT-Hyderabad formally launched covid19tracker.in that has been built as an alternative to the Covid19india.org website. After realizing the criticality of the situation and the need for information to Indians, including researchers, students, and the public, the director of IIT-H authorized a team of developers to carry on the work beyond November 1, 2021.
The new website will predict the future course of the pandemic generated by the SUTRA Consortium, of which IIT-Hyderabad is a member. In the future, the website will have a search feature that will highlight trends and raise alerts as and when required. IIT-H also feels that the emergence of Omicron shows that India cannot collect and monitor its data in isolation.
www.Covid19tracker.org has been built using the public code base of the website. Incidentally, the back-end of the website was developed by a group of enthusiastic students and maintained by staff members of the computer center. The website has been hosted on a public cloud platform to make it highly scalable and responsive even when web traffic shoots up.
According to the top brass of IIT-H, their newly launched website has already managed to get considerable traffic. They also say that the Worldometers website for India uses two sources – www.covid19tracker.org and the website of MoHFW.