Varanasi: The local administration breathed a sigh of relief when a tanker with medical oxygen from the Bokaro steel mill in Jharkhand arrived on Friday as many hospitals treating severe Covid patients in the district faced a shortage. The oxygen tanker was brought under police escort to save time during transport.
“At our request, the tanker driver drove non-stop from Bokaro and reached Varanasi in about 12.30 hours instead of 14 hours to save patients’ lives,” said District Judge Kaushal Raj Sharma. He said the police escort vehicle was sent by the Varanasi Police Commissioner. The team met the tanker near Dehri-on-Sone and escorted it from there.
The DM said: “The tanker was brought to the Medi Tech Ram Nagar plant to fill the liquid oxygen. The Medi Tech plant was closed after the supply ran out. The facility immediately went into operation after liquid oxygen was filled, filling the hospitals waiting there. ”
The DM said 800 cylinders would be filled on Friday, while another 800 cylinders would be filled for hospital care on Saturday. “Currently, around 3,800 cylinders are being filled daily at six oxygen facilities in the Chandauli district, while the daily demand for 5,000 to 6,000 cylinders is increasing,” he added.
According to DM, another shipment of liquid medical oxygen is expected to reach Varanasi by Friday evening with Oxygen Express. The Indian Railways Oxygen Express against Covid-19 drove from Lucknow via Varanasi to Bokaro on Thursday to meet the need for medical oxygen in Uttar Pradesh. A green corridor between Lucknow and Varanasi has been created for the uninterrupted movement of the train.
Officials said that an oxygen facility is being built at Shiv Prasad Gupta Divisional Hospital with MLA funding from UP Minister Neelkanth Tiwari. The minister said he had issued a letter on the matter. MLC AK Sharma also held a meeting with authorities at the Banaras Hindu University Trauma Center and Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital to increase the number of oxygenated beds for Covid patients.