Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar today dubbed "pointless" allegations that his government was tinkering with the data on Covid-related deaths in his state to suppress the overall figures. He said the focus in these difficult times must be on helping people battle the disease.
"The kind of situation we are in, we don't want to tinker with data," Mr Khattar told reporters yesterday in Hisar. He was visiting the district to check on the condition of health facilities there.
Referring to the five deaths in the district on Monday allegedly due to a shortage of oxygen, he said the limitations of the available infrastructure must be taken into consideration.
Five COVID-19 patients died in a private hospital with the hospital authorities attributing the deaths to the shortage of oxygen. The administration denied this and ordered a magisterial probe.
"We should focus on seeing how people can recover. No amount of furore can bring back the dead. There is no point in a debate over the number of deaths..." he said. "This pandemic...neither you knew about it nor I. We need everyone's cooperation in these times, yours, mine, and the patients."
Haryana reported 11,504 fresh Covid cases yesterday besides 75 deaths. It is being alleged that many states are underreporting their casualties to show themselves in relatively better light.
"We will try to save every life. It is useless to say the deaths are fewer or more. What is meaningful is to ask if we are able to fix our systems. Which is what we are trying to do," Mr Khattar said.
He denied the allegation that his administration was being unresponsive to queries about the disease and its impact.