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As Covid infection spreads, Delhi govt urges Centre to double oxygen quota

KR Srivats New Delhi | Updated on April 30, 2021

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia   -  PTI

Deputy CM Sisodia writes to Commerce Minister to allot 976 t a day from 490 t now

The Delhi government has urged the Centre to increase the daily allocation of medical oxygen 976 tonnes a day from 490 tonnes on “humanitarian grounds” due to the unprecedented health crisis.

The additional oxygen allocation is urgently required and this should preferably come from nearby oxygen plants reducing the turnaround time, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia wrote in a letter to Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal.

Sisodia also urged Centre to provide transport infrastructure including railways and tankers for the additional allocation, since Delhi being a non-industrial State does not have its own infrastructure. “The allocation along with transport infrastructure will enable us to immediately operationalise the additional beds being set up on war footing”, Sisodia said.

From the initial allocation of 378 tonne per day, the Centre had increased it to 480 tonnes on April 18 and then to 490 tonnes. Sisodia pointed out that the additional allocation to Delhi has been made from plants which are located more than 1,500 km from Delhi — that is Durgapur, Rourkela and Kalinganagar.

In spite of the additional allocation, Delhi has not received the allotted quantity even on a single day and most of its officers and ministers are in the process of rationing the supply of medical oxygen to various Covid hospitals 24x7, Sisodia noted.

On an average, there has been 25,000 new Covid cases and about 10 per cent of them required some form of hospitalisation including oxygen support. The Delhi government is creating an additional 15,000 non-ICU beds and 1,200 ICU beds within one week to 10 days on a war footing basis, he said.

Medical oxygen is being allocated to various Covid hospitals as per the formula prescribed by the central government. At present there are 16,272 non-ICU oxygen beds and 4,866 ICU beds. With the additional beds coming into operation, the total estimated daily requirement of medical oxygen is 976 tonne.

Published on April 30, 2021

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