India is currently witnessing the worst of Covid-19 crisis. In just past 24 hours, the country has reported a spike of 3.57 lakh new cases and 3,449 deaths. Amid these trying times, most of the patients are not losing their lives due to Covid-19 but rather lack of hospital availability, oxygen, life-saving medications and proper care.
Even as India receives medical aid from foreign countries, one issue that needs to be addressed at the earliest is the shortage of cylinders. While India is producing more oxygen than before and setting up new plans, states and people are not getting the required help due to shortage of even empty cylinders. In another instance, oxygen cylinder manufacturing has been halted at some production plants due to shortage of liquid oxygen.
Dr Amiya Chandra, Zonal Development Commissioner, Kandla Special Economic Zone (KASEZ) has told a news portal that the procurement of liquid oxygen for cylinder manufacturers from local suppliers has come to a halt because the suppliers need to supply it to hospitals to save lives. They are trying to procure liquid oxygen from cylinder makes in other states and considering the option of importing it.
Despite the clarification offered by Home Ministry that the use of liquid oxygen for manufacturing cylinders in allowed, the makers are struggling to procure cylinders. Part of the reason behind this is confusion among local authorities about issuing permission to oxygen manufacturers.