Battling record COVID-19 surge, Rajasthan urges Centre to increase oxygen quota

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Jaipur, Apr 21 (PTI) Amid an alarming rise in the number of COVID-19 cases, the Rajasthan government on Wednesday urged the Centre to increase the state's quota of oxygen from 250 metric tonnes (MT) to 325 MT and ensure a steady supply of Remdevisir vaccines, an official statement said.

State Health Minister Raghu Sharma spoke to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan over the issues on Wednesday and has also written a letter to him, it said.

Sharma urged Vardhan to increase the state's current allocation of 250 MT of liquid medical oxygen to 325 MT by the end of this month. He also sought an urgent allocation of an additional 120 tonnes of oxygen to tackle the emergency situation in the state, the statement said.

In his letter, Sharma said the number of coronavirus cases in Rajasthan is continuously increasing and presently, there are more than 85,000 active cases in the state. Due to this, the demand for medical oxygen in the state is also increasing continuously.

Sharma further requested the Centre to ensure a steady supply of Remdesvir vaccines, used for the treatment of coronavirus infection, to the state, according to the statement.

With 14,622 COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, Rajasthan registered a record daily rise for the sixth straight day that pushed the state's cumulative tally to 4,53,407, according to a bulletin.

The total number of deaths in the state climbed to 3,330 as 62 more people succumbed to the disease, the bulletin stated.

Meanwhile, the Rajasthan government ordered private hospitals with 100 or more beds to reserve 50 per cent of them for COVID-19 patients.

The order issued by Health Secretary Siddharth Mahajan further asked private hospitals with more than 60 and less than 100 beds to reserve 40 per cent of them for COVID-19 patients.

Earlier, private hospitals with more than 60 beds were supposed to reserve 25 per cent of them for coronavirus patients.

The number of active cases in Rajasthan stands at 96,366. So far, 3,53,711 patients have recovered from the coronavirus infection in the state, according to the bulletin. PTI AG SDA DIV DIV