The Union Minister of State for Health, Bharti Praveen Pawar, told the Rajya Sabha that neither the states nor the Union Territories had reported deaths from lack of oxygen. But the government admits that in the second wave the demand for medical oxygen in the country has increased enormously.
The amount of oxygen required during the first wave increased from 3,095 metric tons to 9,000 metric tons during the second wave. The government claims that the central government has tried to supply the states with adequate amounts of oxygen. To the question of the deputy of Congress KC Venugopal that it is not true that many patients have died in hospitals throughout the country due to lack of oxygen, the minister said that health is a matter of state.
While the central government claims that no one died without oxygen during the second wave of disasters, the question remains who will be responsible for all these deaths.
Whatever the government’s argument, the numbers tell a different story. According to the Times of India, 83 deaths have been reported in government hospitals in Goa alone due to oxygen-related problems. Eleven Kovid patients died in the ICU in Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh due to the interruption of the oxygen supply. Seven patients died at a government hospital in Hyderabad after two hours of insufficient oxygen
The Times of India reports that a total of 45 deaths in Andhra Pradesh were due to lack of oxygen, but only 23 in government records.
The death of 12 patients at Delhi Batra Hospital from lack of oxygen and the subsequent statement by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal caused quite a stir in the country at the time. ‘It is very painful. Those lives could have been saved if there had been oxygen. We need to provide at least enough oxygen to Delhi, ”Kejriwal said.
According to the Karnataka High Court panel, 36 lives were lost in the state in May due to lack of oxygen. Of these, compensation has been paid to 24 people. According to the Haryana government, 19 people have died from lack of oxygen.
The media around the world have shared and viralized horror scenes of bodies buried and cremated throughout northern India, including on the banks of the Ganges, as synonymous with the destruction of Kovid. It has been only a few months since these films, which were widely shared by international media including the BBC, made India a target for the world.
The question of why the cylinders were brought from Saudi Arabia if there was no oxygen shortage is relevant.
Despite these figures, the government has taken a firm stand on its own case. On Tuesday, Union Minister Mansukh Mandav told the Lok Sabha that if there were any problems with the figures, it was the fault of the states and there was no point in blaming the central government for it.
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