Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Delhi's Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal on Monday assured coronavirus testing will be made available for all in Delhi in the next few days at an an all-party meeting held to discuss the management of the coronavirus situation in the National Capital Region.
The coronavirus tests per day in Delhi will reach 18,000 by June 20, the Home Minister said. Most parties, cutting across party lines, had demanded more testing, as well as some form of cap on treatment costs.
"All parties should forget political differences and work together for people of Delhi," said Shah after the meeting. "We will have to increase COVID-19 testing in Delhi by adopting new solutions. United face of all political parties will enhance people's trust and COVID-19 situation in Delhi will be soon normal."
Shah later paid a surprise visit to the LNJP Hospital. A statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs said Shah asked the Delhi chief secretary to ensure CCTV cameras are installed in coronavirus wards to ensure proper monitoring.
The meeting was held in the wake of rising novel coronavirus cases in Delhi. Shah apprised the leaders of four major political parties of Delhi on the steps taken to check the coronavirus pandemic and sought their views on the issue, a Home Ministry official said.
Leaders of the BJP, Congress, Aam Aadmi Party and the BSP have attended the meeting.
Over 41,000 people were infected with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Delhi and it has claimed more than 1,300 lives so far.
The number of COVID-19 cases in Delhi is the third highest in the country after Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.
On Sunday, the home minister held two high-level meetings with Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, mayors and commissioners of Delhi's three municipal corporations to strengthen the strategy to fight the coronavirus.
Shah had announced that COVID-19 testing will be doubled in Delhi in the next two days and subsequently tripled.
Announcing a slew of measures after the meeting, Shah said COVID-19 tests would be started at every polling station in the containment zones and a comprehensive house-to-house health survey would be conducted in the hotspots for contact tracing.
In view of shortage of beds for coronavirus patients in Delhi, the Modi government has decided to immediately provide 500 railway coaches, which will be equipped with all facilities, Shah said.
He added that a committee had been constituted under the chairmanship of NITI Aayog member V K Paul to ensure the availability of 60 per cent beds by private hospitals at lower rates and fix the rate of tests and treatment.