BENGALURU: The BBMP, which was earlier lauded for its handling of the pandemic, is now facing the heat from people and health experts for its ineptness as the number of Covid cases in Bengaluru spiked over the past week.
“Why did the BBMP not prepare an action plan during the lockdown? It’s a tragic loss of lives as manpower and logistics planning have been delayed until the surge in cases,” said senior epidemiologist Dr Giridhara R Babu, who is also one of the advisors to the State government on Covid. The BBMP has recently been reeling under the surge of cases, with residents struggling to find information about available beds in hospitals for Covid as well as non-Covid patients.
A member of the Covid task force who spoke to TNIE on condition of anonymity, said, “The BBMP has to pull up its socks. In every task force meeting, all that we hear is ‘We will get everything ready in one or two days’. It has been over three months now. When will the real-time app for availability of beds be available? Meanwhile Dr Giridhara Babu tweeted that the Udupi Dy Commissioner had shown better leadership than the BBMP. “It is time for inspiring leadership & accountability; not for excuses.
Delhi, Mumbai & Chennai have shown that course corrections can help in reducing the adversities of surge in cases (sic),” he tweeted. A resident of Malleswaram and a retired doctor, Dr Ramachandra KN, said “If BBMP doesn’t act soon it will be a disaster.” Meanwhile former mayor Padmavati questioned BBMP’s purchase of 27 mist cannon machines, each costing about Rs 53 lakh.
“The existing ones are not helping as workers cannot cover many places due to the rise in Covid cases. What is the necessity to spend so much? Also, the prices they have quoted are too high,” she said. Dr Giridhara Babu said the need of the hour was an oxygen concentrator. “At Rs 60,000 per piece, we can get around 2,334 good quality oxygen concentrators. It will probably save more poor people’s lives,” he said.
Despite several attempts, BBMP Commissioner B H Anil Kumar could not be reached for a comment.