New Delhi, Apr 20 (IANS): Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation on the Covid situation on Tuesday evening, saying that the government is working to ensure oxygen supply for Covid patients who need it.
Modi said that this time the demand for oxygen has increased in several parts of the country and the government is working with full sensitivity to meet the demand.
"The union government, state governments, private sector, everyone is trying their best to provide oxygen to those in need," Modi said.
The Prime Minister also told the nation that several measures are being taken at different levels to increase the production and supply of oxygen in the country.
"New oxygen plants are being set up in the states, delivery of one lakh new oxygen cylinders, use of industrial units for medical purposes, oxygen rail... the government making every effort to ensure oxygen for the needy," he said. It was recently reported that the union government took six months to finalise tenders for new oxygen plants. Though the Central Medical Services Society floated tenders in October to start 162 oxygen plants across the country, only 33 have come up.
Modi also said that there is a need to save the country from lockdown, and requested the states to go for lockdown as the last option.
The Prime Minister lauded the efforts of the scientists, saying that they have developed vaccines for the countrymen in a very short time working day and night.
"Today, the cheapest vaccine in the world is in India. We have a vaccine suited to India's cold chain system," he said.
Modi pointed out that it is a team effort that enabled India to launch the world's largest vaccination campaign with two made in India vaccines.
The Prime Minister’s address came on a day when India reported over 2.59 lac cases across the country over 24 hours, the highest single-day spike recorded since the beginning of the pandemic. Several badly affected states in India have imposed restrictions like night curfews and partial lockdowns as a measure to control the spread of coronavirus.
"India has till now fought COVID-19 with patience and courage. This credit is to you citizens," he added.