BHOPAL: Government is in a catch 22 situation. The orders by the state government to divert all oxygen supply meant for industrial use to hospitals has left more than 7000 workers staring at their livelihood.
More than 120 industrial units in Mandideep Industrial Area have stopped their operations for past one week after their supply of oxygen was diverted for medical purpose. This has left more than 7000 workers engaged in these units without job.
The industrial units affected include majors like HEG, Crompton Greaves Ltd, Eicher Motors Ltd, Andritz Hydro besides several dozen units, specially engaged in fabrication works.
Bhagava Carbonic Pvt Ltd that supplies oxygen to more than 120 industrial units confirmed that they were unable to do so for past one week. ìOn an average we used to supply 4000 cubic meters of oxygen to industrial units in and around Mandideep. The supply that we used to get from Gujarat and Maharashtra has been stopped. We are helpless in such a situation,î said Saurabh Bhargava, director Bhargava Carbonic.
The workers' trade union, representative Ramraj Tiwari said that the workers who have lost their jobs havenít got any help from anywhere till date. The Government has been reiterating that workers should not leave and they should not migrate. We want officials to come here and help the affected workers, said Tiwari.
The office bearers of Mandideep Industries Association took a cautious approach on the matter. President of the association, Rajeev Agarwal said that the state government should have made appropriate arrangements for medical oxygen after the first wave of Covid pandemic.
I don't know the reasons behind callous approach of the government but industries are suffering because of their fault, said Agarwal. He added that industries have no objection to supplying of oxygen for medical use but why government could not develop its own infrastructure for medical oxygen-especially after Covid first wave needs to be probed.