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Arvind Kejriwal govt ‘failed’ in oxygen storage & distribution, has ‘criminal liability’ for deaths: BJP

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The BJP on Friday alleged that the “criminal liability” for the death of many patients in two Delhi hospitals due to lack of oxygen falls on Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, saying his government “failed” in proper distribution and storage of the life-saving gas.

Citing a report by the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO), a central agency, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said the Delhi government on a few occasions returned the liquid medical oxygen supplied to the national capital because it had no storage capacity and even asked neighbouring states like Haryana and Uttar Pradesh to keep the additional quota in reserve.

All this while Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia kept blaming the Centre and other states for the oxygen crisis and accused the central government of meting out “step-motherly” treatment to the city, Patra said, adding that it was the chief minister who treated his own people in a “step-motherly” way.

“The way you work has been exposed today. The (oxygen) crisis could have been averted and managed. I am sorry to tell Arvind Kejriwal that the crisis was grossly mismanaged by you. I hope you and Sisodia will answer and apologise too. Your work have been all about spreading confusion,” Patra said at a virtual press conference.

Citing one incident, the BJP leader said Linde plant in Faridabad was expected to supply 120 MT liquid medical oxygen to Delhi on May 9 but the local government sent 74 MT back due to the non-availability of storage space or less demand in Delhi.

The Delhi government could not prepare for the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic despite the Centre’s warnings to all states, and has worked only to spread confusion and do politics over the crisis, he claimed. While it kept seeking more oxygen, it could not make arrangements for storing the gas, he said.

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“Due to AAP government’s inability to build storage, 20 and 13 patients lost their lives in Jaipur Golden Hospital and Batra Hospital. Both hospitals had tried to contact the Aam Aadmi Party government but it did nothing. The criminal liability is on you, Arvind Kejriwal,” Patra alleged.

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