West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee accused the Union government of depriving her state of medical oxygen by ‘diverting the supply to Uttar Pradesh’ and demanded that the oxygen produced in the state should not be sent to any other state.
Speaking to the press in Kolkata, she also claimed that Gujarat was being supplied more vaccine than other states.
Opposing the Centre’s oxygen allocation scheme, the Bengal government, in a press note, said that since the demand for oxygen is rising in the state from various hospitals, it cannot be sent out to any other part of the country.
‘As per the current patient load and the rising trend of the infection, it is expected that the consumption level in West Bengal will radically rise to roughly 450 MT per day in the next couple of weeks," the press note said.
‘The present allocation of liquid oxygen to outside West Bengal will jeopardise the treatment of Covid patients in the state. The Government of Bengal has accordingly requested the Government of India on April 22, 2022 to consider the need of the state and not to divert the medical oxygen available in the state to elsewhere,’ the press note added.
The Bengal government said: ‘The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Department, Government of India, recently on April 21, 2021 allotted 200 MT of oxygen from different plants located in West Bengal to outside the state.’
Many states, like Maharashtra, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh, are facing shortage of oxygen supply amid rising cases of COVID-19. Mamata is afraid that Bengal too might face such a situation and thus does not want oxygen produced in the state to be sent to any other state in India.