Stalin seeks PM Modi’s intervention for higher allocation of medical oxygen

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on May 07, 2021

Daily consumption of medical oxygen is projected to increase by 400 tonnes in the next two weeks

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to intervene and get the revised orders on medical oxygen allocation for the State implemented.

While the State is taking a number of steps to control the spread of the pandemic, there is a “severe crisis” with regard to availability of medical oxygen.

Letter to PM

Currently, the daily consumption of medical oxygen is around 440 tonnes and is projected to increase by another 400 tonnes in the next two weeks. Unfortunately, in the National Oxygen Plan, the allocation for the State has been given as 220 tonnes only. Since this is untenable, State officers had discussion with officials of DPIIT on May 1 and 2 and it was agreed that at least 476 tonnes will be provided to the State immediately.

However, this order has not yet been issued, resulting in supply constraints to the hospitals, the letter said.

In view of the sharp dwindling stock of liquid oxygen in the State, an emergency meeting was held on Thursday by officials of DPIIT with Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala. It was agreed that an allocation of 40 tonnes will be provided to Tamil Nadu from INOX, Kanjikode (Kerala) for at least next four days.

It was also agreed that 60 tonnes from Praxair, Sriperumbudur (Linde Saint Gobain) will be allocated to Tamil Nadu with 20 tonnes provided after two days.

In addition, to meet the medium-term requirements, 120 tonnes will be provided from SAIL and Linde, Rourkela. The revised allotments are still awaited.

Very critical

The availability of oxygen in Tamil Nadu is ‘very very’ critical and there was an unfortunate incident of 13 deaths in Chengalpattu two days ago. “We request your kind intervention to get revised orders issued and provide full support to Tamil Nadu in this hour of crisis. We also request Government of India to provide at least 20 ISO cryogenic containers and trains to transport oxygen to Tamil Nadu,” urged Chief Minister Stalin

Meanwhile, addressing district collectors, Stalin said that it was the government’s responsibility to save people. Authorities should work in unison to contain the spread of Coronavirus.

He urged those above 45 to voluntarily get vaccinated. With daily Covid-19 cases in the State at 25,000, medical experts said it is likely to increase in the next couple of days. He urged the authorities to be transparent and inform them about the ground situation.

Covid care centre

Stalin monitored the Covid care centre at Nandambakkam. In the first phase, 300 beds will be ready from May 10, and in the second phase 500 more beds available. An oxygen storage tank with a capacity of 11 kilolitre is being set up. Doctors and paramedical staff from Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital and the Omandurar Hospital will be shifted to the new facility, says a government press release.

Covid count

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu reported an additional 26,465 coronavirus cases (24,898 on Thursday) to take the total number of infections in the State to 13.23 lakh. However, after 22,381 Covid-19 patients were discharged, the number of active cases stood at 1.35 lakh.

There were 197 Covid-19 deaths registered and a total of 1.52 lakh samples were tested.

Chennai reported the highest number of infections with 6,738 followed by Chengalpattu (2,154); Coimbatore (2,101); and Tiruvallur (1,384).

Published on May 07, 2021

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