Enough is enough: Delhi HC after 8 Covid patients dead due to oxygen shortage in Batra Hospital
HC warns of contempt action against the Centre if the allocated 490 MT of oxygen is not supplied to Delhi today
Eight Covid patients including the gastroenterology department’s head died in Batra Hospital due to oxygen shortage today on May 1.
The Medical Director of the hospital, Dr. SCL Gupta, told the media that six of the eight were admitted to the hospital’s ICU ward and two to the main ward. The doctor who died has been identified as Dr. RK Himthani, according to NDTV.
Business Standard quoted Dr. Sudhanshu Bankata, CEO, Batra Hospital saying, “At 7 A.M, we raised an alarm that we will run out of oxygen by 12 P.M. Delhi government didn’t have any oxygen to supply to us. We were without oxygen till 1:35 P.M. As a result, we lost 8 patients.”
This is the second time in a week that Batra Hospital has run out of oxygen supply. On April 24, the hospital reportedly received a last-minute re-supply that arrived minutes after its oxygen reserves ran out. The hospital has also approached the High Court over shortage issues.
In a special hearing today before the Delhi High Court Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli, it took cognisance of the tragic incident and directed the Central Government to ensure that Delhi receives the allocated quantity of 490 metric tons of oxygen today itself “by whatever means”, reported LiveLaw.
Justice Sanghi slammed the Centre for this delay and remarked, “Now the water has gone over our head. Enough is enough. We are not asking for more than 490 MT. You have allocated it. Now it falls upon you to fulfil it.
The Bench noted that although the said quantity has been allocated by the Centre to the Delhi government, it has merely been a “paper allocation” since the state has not received the supply.
The Bench warned the Centre that if this direction is not implemented, the concerned authority will be asked to present himself for hearing on Monday (May 3), and they might consider contempt action against the Central Government.
Additional Solicitor General Chetan Sharma also tried to persuade the Bench against passing any order in the matter as the Supreme Court is hearing a similar issue on oxygen shortage. But, according to LiveLaw, the visibly upset Bench said, “Don’t tell us that. Eight people have died. We can’t shut our eyes to people dying in Delhi.”
The High Court has taken up several pleas related to oxygen shortage in the National Capital filed by hospitals like Jaipur Golden, Maharaja Agrasen and Batra. Last week on April 24, Jaipur Golden lost 25 patients as they ran out of oxygen supply.
Courtesy : Sabrang