COVID Situation in Karnataka Critical, State Seeks More Oxygen, Remdesivir Supplies

23 Apr, 2021 14:16 IST|Sakshi Post

Karnataka requests 1,500 tonnes of oxygen and one lakh Remdesivir vials from the Centre.

On Wednesday, the state announced 23,558 new COVID cases and 116 deaths.

The total number of active cases in Karnataka stands at 1.76 lakh.

Bengaluru: In light of the spike in the number of COVID cases in the state, Karnataka has requested that the Centre supply 1,500 metric tonnes of oxygen and one lakh vials of Remdesivir.

"We have estimated that in the next one month, we may require 1,500 metric tonnes of oxygen. In this regard, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa has written to Union Minister for Railways, Commerce and Industries Piyush Goyal," Dr. K Sudhakar, the state's health minister, told reporters on Thursday.

The state's health minister, Dr. K Sudhakar, said he, too, has written to Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, requesting oxygen supply.

According to Sudhakar, the state government met up with the state's main oxygen generators. JSW Steel is the biggest of them all.

"We had a meeting with Sajjan Jindal and he has assured us to supply as much oxygen required in the state," Sudhakar said.

After the meeting, the Minister said that JSW Steel had delivered 40 metric tonnes of oxygen to Bengaluru in the last two days.

Apart from that, the state has requested additional Remdesivir injections, which are critical for COVID care.

The state had ordered 70,000 vials of Remdesivir injection, of which 20,000 had arrived and the rest would be delivered in the coming days, according to him.

"We have already ordered 70,000 vials of Remdesivir. This besides we have put forth the demand for one lakh Remdesivir vials for which we have written to the Centre," he added.

When asked why the state did not store enough oxygen earlier, the Minister responded that once the cases had decreased, there was no longer a need for it, so there was no point in storing it.

Meetings were held to meet the criteria now that the cases had been increasing.

The Minister's remarks came as demand for oxygen and Remdesivir injections rose in response to the alarming increase in COVID cases, leading to their blackmarketization.

The government retaliated by arresting a few people who were illegally selling Remdesivir injections. The shortage, however, continued. The administration, on the other hand, is not cracking down on the illegal sale of oxygen cylinders.

The state announced 23,558 new COVID cases and 116 deaths on Wednesday alone, bringing the total number of active COVID cases to 1.76 lakh.

The active cases include 904 patients in the ICU.

Sudhakar dubbed Bengaluru the epicentre of COVID in Karnataka since it accounted for more than 70% of all cases and fatalities.

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