Don’t Think We Could Say Delhi Exaggerated Oxygen Need 4X”: AIIMS Chief
It would not be correct to say that Delhi “exaggerated” its oxygen needs by four times during the second wave of Covid, AIIMS chief Dr Randeep Guleria – who heads the sub group which led the audit- said, reacting to a report that has set off a new clash between the Centre and Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in the capital.
“Delhi oxygen audit is an interim report. I don’t think we could say four times exaggeration,” Dr Guleria told NDTV this morning.
“The matter is in the Supreme Court. We need to wait and see what the top court says about it,” he added.
On Friday, a report circulated in the media – from sources close to the BJP – had claimed that the Delhi government had “exaggerated” the capital’s oxygen needs by four times at the peak of the second wave and the supply of excess oxygen to Delhi “affected other states”.
Central government sources said it is the interim report of a Supreme Court audit team. The Aam Aadmi Party government, however, insists there is no such report and the claim is part of “malicious and false” propaganda.
Based on the report, the Centre said that the Delhi government used the wrong formula to calculate its oxygen needs and made exaggerated claims in court on April 30.
“It was discussed that there is a gross discrepancy (about four times) in that the actual oxygen consumption claimed (1140MT) was about 4 times higher than the versus calculated consumption by formula for bed capacity (289MT),” says the interim report of a sub-group, which the Centre has submitted to the Supreme Court along with recommendations of a National Task Force on oxygen.
The sub-group, led by AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria, includes Delhi Government Principal Home Secretary Bhupinder Bhalla, Max Healthcare Director Sandeep Buddhiraja, Union Jal Shakti Ministry Joint Secretary Subodh Yadav and Sanjay Kumar Singh of the Petroleum and Oxygen Safety Organization (PESO).
“My crime is I fought for the lives of Delhi’s 2 crore people,” the Chief Minister said in a tweet in Hindi.