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Enough stock for all, states need to rationalise oxygen use: Centre

Asserts ramped up production and surplus stocks are enough to meet rising demands

Published: 16th April 2021 09:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th April 2021 09:26 AM   |  A+A-

Oxygen cylinders are loaded into ambulances waiting to take them to hospitals in Lucknow on Thursday | PTI

Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  With acute shortage of oxygen being reported from various states, the Centre on Wednesday announced that it will carry out a mapping of oxygen sources and initiating actions to avoid panic among the public. The Union health ministry said there is sufficient production capacity of around 7,127 metric ton, and that the surplus oxygen available with steel plants is also being utilised as per need.

The total production is 100 % since past two days, the Centre maintained. On Monday, India’s medical oxygen consumption was 3,842 MT, which is 54% of the daily production capacity. Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, UP, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, Punjab and Rajasthan account for the maximum consumption of medical oxygen.

The current stocks, including the industrial stocks with the manufacturing plants, is more than 50,000 MT, the Centre said. “Along with the ramped-up production of the oxygen manufacturing units and the surplus stocks available, the present availability of oxygen is sufficient.”  At the same time, the government asked states to make rational use of medical oxygen and ensure that there is no wastage. The states were instructed to set up control rooms for ensuring smooth supply and reviewing requirements of cylinders and tankers.

The challenge is to move oxygen to states with increased necessity, the Centre, said adding that mapping of the surplus sources with states that have greater need for oxygen like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Chhattisgarh is being finalised.

The Centre has formed a sub- group to facilitate the movement of tankers by road and rail. Oxygen generating plants sanctioned under PM-Cares are being reviewed for early completion of 100 % of the plants to meet the need of oxygen especially in remote areas.

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