Jaipur: Rajasthan health minister Raghu Sharma on Wednesday sought assistance of Lok Sabha MPs and Rajya Sabha MPs from the state in getting the quota of medical oxygen supply to the state increased in view of the rapidly rising Covid-19 cases.
The issue of supply of medical oxygen has taken on a political hue with Sharma and chief minister Ashok Gehlot alleging discrimination in supply to Rajasthan while the BJP has blamed the state government for poor management.
State BJP president Satish Poonia said Gehlot was blaming the Centre to hide his own failure to manage the Covid-19 situation in the state. He said the centre fulfilled all demands of the state but Gehlot is still critical.
He urged Gehlot to take a leaf from UP CM Yogi Adityanath who has ordered setting up of oxygen plants in a week to meet the shortage.
Rajasthan reported 14,622 new cases and 62 deaths on Wednesday. The active cases are hovering near the 1,00,000 mark at 96,366. The cumulative tally of Covid-19 cases stands at 4,53,407 and the total deaths are 3330.
Sharma wrote to all 25 Lok Sabha and 10 Rajya Sabha MPs from Rajasthan and urged them to help in getting more medical oxygen supplies.
He said the current demand in the state is 250 metric tonnes daily as against the supply of 160 metric tonnes. He said by the month-end the demand will rise to 325 metric tonnes. He said the number of active cases has risen to 96,000 and the demand for oxygen will rise.
Sharma also apprised union health minister Dr Harshvardhan about the shortage of medical oxygen in the state.
Sharma spoke to Dr Harsh Vardhan and has also written to him asking that in view of the rapidly increasing demand, the limit of liquid medical oxygen allotted to Rajasthan be increased from 250 metric tonnes to 325 metric tonnes. He sought immediate supply of 120 metric tonnes of liquid medical oxygen.
Two days back, Sharma had accused the Centre of discrimination in supply of medical oxygen two days back. He said Gujarat was being given 1200 metric tonnes of medical oxygen while Rajasthan was receiving only 124 metric tonnes though the Covid situation in both states is similar.
He also urged that the Centre to ensure adequate supply of Remdesivir drug that is used to treat Covid-19.
Sharma said the demand for Remdesivir is also consistently rising. He said Rajasthan had finalised rate contracts with three pharmaceutical firms for supply of 1.05 lakh vials of Remdesivir. However, despite constant dialogue with the pharmaceutical firms, only 17,770 vials have been received in the last two weeks.