Over 400 more oxygen plants to be active in Uttar Pradesh by July 31
Uttar Pradesh chief secretary Rajendra Kumar Tiwari has directed officials to ensure that more than 400 oxygen plants in the state, which are yet to be made functional, are active by July 31.
Tiwari issued directions after chairing a virtual meeting on Monday with divisional commissioners and district magistrates over the status of oxygen plants which were sanctioned during the deadly second Covid-19 wave during which Uttar Pradesh, along with the rest of the country, witnessed major shortage of liquid medical oxygen.
Tiwari asked officials of districts, where more powerful generators are required to increase the load of transformers or to be used as a backup, to send their requests along with an estimated number of generators needed. He asked district magistrates to arrange for the manpower needed to operate and maintain the oxygen plants.
A total of 533 oxygen plants were sanctioned during the second Covid-19 wave, which was at its peak in April and May. However, of these, only 102 plants have been set up and made functional till now.
The scarcity of medical oxygen during the second wave is reflected in a "mock drill" conducted by a hospital in Agra on April 26, which saw the hospital allegedly stopping its oxygen supply for five minutes, resulting in deaths of five patients. However, it was later given a clean chit by a probe committee.
On Monday, Uttar Pradesh recorded 213 new Covid-19 cases, 478 fresh recoveries and 46 more deaths due to the viral disease, according to a bulletin issued by the state health department. Its cumulative infection tally has thus increased to 1,704,476 including 1,678,089 recoveries, 22,224 deaths and an active caseload which declined further to 4163.