This Article is From Apr 26, 2021

After "Oxygen Audit", Centre Says Don't Panic, Have Enough Stock

With the help of the Air Force, the Railway Ministry is ensuring that timely oxygen refills are being provided to all states

Coronavirus: COVID-19 cases have been rising in India

New Delhi:

After conducting an "oxygen audit", the Home Ministry has assured the country it has enough stock of medical oxygen and has streamlined transportation from producing states to high-demand areas amid the COVID-19 crisis. The centre is monitoring movement of tankers in real-time with GPS.

"Most of the oxygen-generating plants are in eastern and central parts of the country. From there it has to be transported. After reworking the dynamics, turnaround time has been reduced substantially," a senior officer in the Home Ministry said.

According to him, with the help of the Air Force, the Railway Ministry is ensuring that timely refills are being provided to all states.

"We have enough stock of oxygen. The issue is transportation, which we are trying to resolve with active involvement of all stakeholders," the Home Ministry Additional Secretary said.

According to him, empty tankers are being flown to states and then transported by trains. "Filled tankers can't be flown back, so the railways services are being used and due to this we can make oxygen available to states within a day or two," he said, adding there is absolutely no need to panic for oxygen.

He said the centre is monitoring the movement of oxygen-carrying tankers in real-time through GPS and making them available to hospitals at the shortest possible time.

Since Friday last, the Home Ministry has been coordinating efforts to deploy empty oxygen tankers and containers in filling stations across the country to speed up distribution.

The coronavirus situation continues to be grim in India with 3,52,991 people testing positive and a record 2,812 deaths reported on Monday.

The centre is trying to source oxygen from different parts of the country and making it available in worst-hit states by running special trains which are being called "oxygen lifeline".