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Delhi Oxygen Crisis: Situation Improving, Says Kejriwal at High-level Covid Review Meet

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal

Delhi would generate 40 MT of oxygen for the 48 oxygen plants that are in the pipeline.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday chaired a high-level meeting to review the Covid-19 situation in the national capital. The meeting was also attended by Deputy Chief Minsiter Manish Sisodia, Health Minister Satyendar Jain, and all the district magistrates.

During the meeting, Kejriwal pointed out that Delhi’s precarious situation with regard to the availability of oxygen was coming under control and therefore beds across government and private hospitals should be increased. The chief minister also stressed that no life must be lost due to oxygen shortage and distribution bottlenecks within the capital be ironed out.

Among a slew of important decisions, it was announced that Delhi would generate 40 MT of oxygen for the 48 oxygen plants that were in the pipeline. Kejriwal also stressed on having a long term plan and the need for creating large storage capacity for oxygen. He directed the officers to save as much oxygen as possible.

Taking exception to the fact that oximeters were still not supplied to many in home isolation, Kejriwal directed that the same be ensured. The district magistrates were given the responsibility of ensuring that no life was lost due to lack of oxygen in their respective districts.

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Over the past two weeks, Delhi lost a staggering 5,546 lives with hospitals sending desperate SOS calls through social media, phone calls and even moving the court. Deaths in the city’s at least two hospitals were directly linked to the shortage of oxygen.

After repeated orders by the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court that the central government must ensure a supply of 700MT of oxygen per day in the capital, it was only once that Delhi was supplied 730 MT of oxygen- on May 5. However, the next day, supplies dipped to 577 MT.

The chief minister also re-iterated the three month deadline for vaccinating the entire population that is above the age of 18 years in Delhi. Vaccination against Corona Virus, an important tool against the lethal Covid wave sweeing across the capital , is high on the Delhi government’s priority. The chief minister said ‘ if we can vaccinate all residents of Delhi in three months, we can stall the third wave of Covid in the capital’

Over last 24 hours, 1,14,657 people were vaccinated in Delhi of whom 80,306 received their first doses while 34,351 received their second doses. So far, 36,66,694 people have been vaccinated across the capital of which 28,56,955 have received their first doses and 8,09,739 have received their second doses.

The Delhi government also decided to organise a mass Covid-19 vaccination drive for mediapersons. The vaccination camps will be organised at the offices of the media houses and the cost will be borne by the government. However, vaccination will not take place at media houses located in Film City (Noida) as it is falls in Uttar Pradesh.

The State health department will take the initiative further after receiving the responses from media houses.

The chief minsiter also instructed the district magistrates to conduct inspections of at least 2-3 vaccination centres daily and conduct surprise checks in relief camps and old age homes.

Meanwhile, Delhi recorded 19,832 fresh cases, 341 deaths, and 19,085 recoveries on Friday. The current active cases are 91,035. The goverment conducted 79,593 Covid-19 tests, and the positivity rate hovered around 25% to 27% for the third consecutive day.

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