Covid-19: PM Modi takes stock of medical oxygen supply in country, calls for increase in production

As India continues to witness a surge in Covid-19 cases, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Friday reviewed the current situation of medical-grade oxygen supply in the country.

“Inputs from ministries like Health, DPIIT, Steel, Road Transport, etc were also shared with the prime minister. He also stressed that it is important to ensure synergy across ministries and state governments,” a press release issued from the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said.

Modi also took a detailed review of the current situation of oxygen supply and its projected use for the next 15 days across 12 high burden states – Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan.

With Covid cases hitting a new peak, the demand for medical oxygen has increased as it is a critical component in the treatment of Covid-affected patients.

On Thursday, Centre had asked states to make rational use of medical oxygen and ensure there is no wastage while stressing that there is sufficient stock of oxygen in the country.

According to PMO, the Prime Minister was also briefed about the production capacity in the country to meet the rising demand. “Prime Minister suggested to increase oxygen production as per capacity of each plant. It was discussed that surplus stocks of oxygen supply in steel plants are being offered from medical use,” the release added.

Modi also urged officials to ensure seamless and free movement of oxygen tankers throughout the country. The Centre has exempted all interstate movement of oxygen tankers from registration of permits in a bid to ensure easier movement.

Officers also briefed the PM about the efforts being made to import medical-grade oxygen.

India added a record 2,17,353 new coronavirus infections in a day taking the total tally of COVID-19 cases to 1,42,91,917, while active cases surpassed the 15-lakh mark, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Friday.

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