Hospitals in the national capital must be given their full quota of medical oxygen today “by whatever means”, the Delhi High Court told the centre as it heard petitions on how the health infrastructure is trying to cope with the deadly second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Water has gone above the head. You have to arrange everything now. You have made the allocations. You have to fulfil it. Eight lives have been lost. We can’t shut our eyes to it,” the high court said today, referring to a hospital that reported loss of lives after oxygen supply stopped for 80 minutes.
The eight people who died at Delhi’s Batra Hospital this afternoon included a doctor.
“We direct the centre to ensure that Delhi receives its 490 tonnes (of medical oxygen) today by whatever means. It falls on the centre to arrange tankers as well. The allocation was made on April 20 and not even one day Delhi has received its allocated supply. If this is not implemented, we may even consider initiating contempt proceedings,” the high court said.
The court declined the centre’s request to adjourn the hearing till Monday when its officers would explain the situation.
“Enough is enough. No one is asking for more than allocated. If you can’t supply the allocation today, we will see your explanation on Monday,” the high court said.