India is witnessing the worst of the pandemic yet: People dying in hospitals due to lack of oxygen. As hospitals in Delhi-NCR scramble to find oxygen supplies, good samaritans and social organisations across Delhi-NCR are giving a new lease of life to COVID-19 patients gasping for breath by banding together wherever possible. A Sikh Gurdwara in Ghaziabad-Indirapuram has started “oxygen langar” to help these patients out, by helping fill cylinders for free. The gurdwara’s “oxygen langar” for COVID-19 patients promises to supply oxygen in its premises to patients till the time they don’t find a bed for themselves in the hospital. They have also launched a helpline number for the people to call and book oxygen cylinder.
“We are not giving or refilling oxygen cylinders. We are asking people to come here to the Indirapuram Gurudwara along with the patient in their car and we will provide oxygen to them. Be it two, four or 8 hours, we will provide oxygen till the time the patient is not getting a bed in the hospital,” says Gurpreet Singh, in a viral video informing people about the initiative.
The Shri Guru Singh Sabha Gurdwara, Indirapuram along with an NGO, Khalsa Help International, took up the initiative and started administering free oxygen on Thursday evening. By Friday evening, more than 700 patients had visited the ‘langar,’ reportsThe Hindu.
The initiative saw people from East Delhi, Sahibabad and other parts of Ghaziabad rushing to gurdwara after they got to know about the facility. “I dialed all helplines numbers that I found on social media but all in vain. My neighbour then told me about the oxygen facility at gurdwara and I rushed here with my husband. I am thankful to the gurdwara committee for providing oxygen support to her husband and other patients,” one woman told The Hindu.
India on Saturday recorded yet another record Covid spike with 3,46,786 new coronavirus cases and 2,624 deaths. Covid-19 cases have been rising unabated in India as the country faces a second peak. New Delhi on Friday recorded its highest ever death toll with 348 Covid-19 related deaths and 24,331 new coronavirus cases amid a severe crisis of oxygen and hospital beds in the city.
Delhi has a positivity rate of 32 per cent 92,000 active cases. Meanwhile, Delhi hospitals said they continued to face a lack of oxygen. Both the state and Centre took steps to get oxygen delivered to these hospitals on a war footing. Both the governments also promised in the Delhi High Court hearing that they will make oxygen available in these hospitals.