Cong claims 27,000 died in Guj due to COVID-19, seeks compensation for kin

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Ahmedabad, May 26 (PTI) The Congress claimed on Wednesday that COVID-19 has claimed over 27,000 lives in Gujarat since the start of the pandemic against the state government's figure of over 9,000 deaths, and demanded a compensation of Rs 4 lakh each for the families of the deceased.

The state government had earlier this month denied the allegations that COVID-19 deaths were being under-reported.

The Congress also demanded a 'white paper' on the exact number of deaths recorded in Gujarat during the last one year due to coronavirus infection as well as other reasons.

As per the latest government data, 9,701 persons have died due to the viral infection in the state so far.

Gujarat Congress president Amit Chavda told reporters that the party launched an online drive two weeks ago to collect information about coronavirus deaths since the outbreak.

While over 17,300 persons provided details about their dead relatives through `Google Form' facility, around 10,000 physical forms were received at Congress offices, he said.

'It shows that over 27,000 persons have so far died due to coronavirus in Gujarat. Some 22 per cent died at home, over 77 per cent died at hospitals. They may have died due to shortage of oxygen or unavailability of ventilators,' said Chavda.

'We will submit these forms to the government for verification. The government should also conduct its own survey. We want the government to give compensation of Rs 4 lakh each to the kin of all the deceased. There is a provision in this regard in the Disaster Management Act,' the Congress leader added.

Chief Minister Vijay Rupani had earlier denied allegations that the state government was hiding coronavirus fatalities.

As per the ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) guidelines, if a coronavirus patient dies due to comorbidities such as heart disease, the death is not attributed to the pandemic, he had said. PTI PJT PD KRK KRK