COVID-19: E Palaniswami urges PM to halt diversion of oxygen to AP, Telangana, says allocation of oxygen to Tamil Nadu based on wrong allotment

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Chief Minister E Palaniswami has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting cancellation of oxygen supply from its plants to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in view of the rising number of active cases in the state.

In his letter to PM Modi, Mr Palaniswami said that his state Tamil Nadu is witnessing a high level of oxygen dependent active cases, leading to a requirement of 450 metric tonnes (MTs) which is above the state's production capacity of 400 MTs. Currently, eighty metric tonnes of liquid oxygen has been diverted to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and this should be halted in view of increase in oxygen demand, he said.

"As compared to the maximum active case number of around 58,000 during the previous surge in 2020, the active caseload has increased to over a lakh today," he said.

Further he mentioned that the state has been wrongly allotted lesser quota das compared to the number of cases in the state. "The consumption of oxygen in Tamil Nadu has already reached 310 MTs as against the inadequate allotment made to the state of only 220 MTs," he said citing data published by Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisations.

"The latest National Medical Oxygen allotment plan allocation for Tamil Nadu has been fixed at 220 MTs and based on the wrong allotment, 80 MTs of liquid oxygen has been diverted from the manufacturing facilities located in Sriperumpudur to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. This is based on the wrong position that the existing oxygen consumption in Tamil Nadu is lower than the manufacturing capacity," he said in the letter.

He stressed that the states to which the allotment has been made have lower number of active cases than us also have major steel industries located within the states/close to their states. Hence the diversion from Sriperumpudur plant which supplies to Chennai city with the second biggest caseload in South India seems to have no justification."

Currently, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and Kerala cumulatively account for 69.94 per cent of India's total active cases.

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