'Shameless politics': Piyush Goyal to Uddhav Thackeray after Maharashtra complains of oxygen shortage
As a war of words breaks out between the Maharashtra government and the Centre over the shortage of medical oxygen supply for the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) patients in the state, Union railways minister Piyush Goyal on Saturday slammed Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and said Maharashtra received the highest quantity of oxygen across the country and the central government is in touch with state governments to “assess their needs and help them in best possible manner".
“GoI, with all stakeholders, is ensuring maximum oxygen production in India. We are currently producing 110% of Oxygen generating capacity and diverting all available Oxygen from industrial use to medical use,” Goyal tweeted.
Reiterating Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remarks at Friday’s review meeting on medical oxygen where he told that the Centre and states should work with synergy in this crisis, Goyal accused Maharashtra CM Thackeray of playing petty politics.
“He (Thackray) needs to stop his daily dose of shameless politics and take responsibility,” the Union railways minister wrote on the microblogging site and added the state is suffering from an inept and corrupt government. “People of Maharashtra are following ‘Majha Kutumb, Majhi Javabadari’ dutifully. It is time the CM also follows his duties in the spirit of ‘Majha Rajya, Majhi Javabadari,” he said.
During his address to the people of Maharashtra on April 13 over the worsening Covid-19 disease situation, CM Thackeray said there is a shortage of medical oxygen, beds and an increased demand for the Remdesivir drug in the state. He requested the Centre to provide assistance in supplying oxygen to the state by using the aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) and he would speak to the Prime Minister in this regard.
On Saturday, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and Maharashtra minority minister Nawab Malik alleged that the chief minister was trying to contact PM Modi over the shortage of oxygen and Remdesivir, but he was told PM Modi is currently on a tour to West Bengal for the ongoing state assembly elections.
Maharashtra which is the worst-hit state in the Covid disease pandemic has till now recorded over 3.7 million cases, 59,551 deaths and 3,519,208 recoveries, according to the state health department’s bulletin. On Friday, Maharashtra saw the highest daily surge of 63,729 new cases while 398 succumbed to the infection. The state, apart from a weekend lockdown and night curfew, has been placed under Section 144 from April 14, 8pm to May 1, 7am where no movement of residents is permitted without valid reasons and all essential services have to operate from 7am to 8pm.