Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Member of Parliament from Anantnag (Retd) Justice Hassnain Masoodi has asked the government to urgently provide a minimum of 1600 bulk and medium capacity Oxygen Cylinders to Anantnag, Kulgam, Pulwama and Shopian districts of south Kashmir.
In a letter addressed to Lt Governor, Masoodi while appreciating the role played by District Development Commissioners, Chief Medical Officers, administrative machinery and healthcare workers at all levels in the four districts, in combating Covid 19, has identified the problem areas warranting immediate attention and required to be urgently addressed. He has expressed satisfaction over commissioning of 1000 LPM Oxygen generating units close to the District Hospitals at Anantnag, Kulgam, Pulwama and Shopian and one such unit at Trauma Hospital Bijbehara.
Masoodi has, however, emphasized that as there is little possibility of setting up Oxygen generating units in Covid Wellness Centres/ Hospitals/ Isolation Centres and peripheral health centres like SDHs, PHCs, SHC and CHC, all these healthcare facilities will continue to depend on portable oxygen supplied in bulk and medium cylinders. It is stated that approximately 1000 dedicated Hospital beds with 40 LPM flow oxygen support have been, as per available information, set up in healthcare facilities across 4 districts and such huge exercise made possible due to untiring efforts of District Development Commissioners with the support of their respective teams would not be of much relief in absence of robust oxygen supply system made possible by adequate number of Oxygen cylinders deployed for use in such centres.
Masoodi in a separate communication addressed to Central Government has also sought release of funds under MPLAD Scheme in relaxation of the Order of March 2019 to supplement and support the battle against the pandemic as with an amount of Rs 1.50 crore already released by him for purchase of ventilators, PPE kits and Face Masks the allotted funds are almost exhausted. The letter also suggests assigning a leadership role to a senior officer to monitor and coordinate and have available all necessary information about the colossal challenge and steps taken up to fight it and above all, be accessible to all the stakeholders.
In the present scenario it is not known, whom to approach for convincing information and appropriate response to the problem highlighted and grievance voiced. Such a mechanism, it is pointed out, would be reassuring to District Development Commissioners and other key actors engaged in the battle against Covid 19 at district level and release them of extra pressure on their precious time resources created at times by repetitive and aimless video- conferences.
Masoodi has recalled that such mechanism had, last year worked well in resolving the crisis when thousands of labourers and students were stranded within and outside the Country due to sudden lock down and there was a senior officer designated to respond to the inputs, and who remained accessible without any difficulty to much relief of all those involved in their safe and early return.