Now Reading
‘Few Hours of Oxygen Left in Some Hospitals’: Delhi CM Tweets of Serious Crisis

‘Few Hours of Oxygen Left in Some Hospitals’: Delhi CM Tweets of Serious Crisis

Family members of COVID-19 patients wait to refill cylinders with medical oxygen at a plant in Lucknow, April 20, 2021. Photo: PTI

New Delhi: On a day when Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted that some hospitals in Delhi were going to run out of medical oxygen in a few hours, the Uttar Pradesh administration stationed officers at a Greater Noida oxygen manufacturing plant to check movement of oxygen cylinders, hindering supplies to hospitals in the national capital, PTI has reported.

On Tuesday evening, Kejriwal took to Twitter urging the Centre to assist with oxygen supply. His wife, Sunita Kejriwal, has tested positive for COVID-19.

Several news outlets reported that the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in Delhi had said that they have just eight hours of oxygen left. The hospital has 485 COVID-19 beds, of which 475 are occupied. Around 120 patients are currently in the ICU.

Its chairman D.S. Rana said, “6,000 cubic meters of it is left, which at the rate of current consumption will last till 1 am. Need urgent replenishment.”

‘UP order impeding supply’

Amid the severe shortage of oxygen, Gautam Buddha Nagar District Magistrate Suhas L.Y. issued orders posting two senior officers round-the-clock at Inox Air Products Pvt Ltd’s Greater Noida factory that manufacturers and supplies medical oxygen.

The officers, of the rank of deputy district officer, will “be present at the company site during the allotted hours and ensure adequate supply of oxygen to Covid-19 hospitals” in the Gautam Buddha Nagar district, the order by Suhas said.

One officer has been posted at the factory from 8 am to 8 pm and another for 12 hours beginning 8 in the evening, according to the order reviewed by PTI.

Also read: COVID-19: As Thousands Gasp for Oxygen, Government Tardiness in Spotlight

The factory supplies medical oxygen to hospitals in Delhi. The order has hampered supplies to several hospitals in the national capital.

Also, the company is unable to supply oxygen from its Rajasthan plant due to restrictions imposed by the state government.

This is creating an acute shortage in the national capital, three persons aware of the development reportedly told PTI.

The Centre, last Friday, had directed states to ensure uninterrupted movement of medical oxygen carrying vehicles along their borders and said that they must not impose any curb on production and supply of the essential public health commodity anywhere.

Family members of COVID 19 patient in queue to take cylinder filled with medical oxygen at a plant as coronavirus cases surge across the country, in Prayagraj on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. Photo: PTI

Kejriwal had on Sunday termed the shortage of oxygen for coronavirus patients an “emergency”. He had also written to Union Minister of Commerce and Industries Piyush Goyal, seeking his intervention in the matter.

The Delhi government has set up a 24-member committee to ensure “rational” use of oxygen for treatment of COVID-19 patients. An order issued by the Health Department said the ‘Oxygen Audit Committee’ will identify areas of wasteful consumption.

The consumption of oxygen has undergone a quantum increase with the admission of a large number of serious patients who require oxygen support, it said.

The Union Home Ministry responded to Kejriwal’s plea by saying that the Centre has been making all efforts to make oxygen available to hospitals in Delhi and will try to ensure that there is no shortage of the essential public health commodity.

(With PTI inputs)

Scroll To Top