Top Story Oxygen Shortage in Delhi Hospitals: HC queries if CNG...

Oxygen Shortage in Delhi Hospitals: HC queries if CNG cylinders can be used to transport oxygen

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New Delhi, Apr 23 (ILNS): While dealing with the issue of shortage of Oxygen at hospitals here, the Delhi High Court today suggested an unconventional approach and questioned, “if CNG cylinders can be used for transportation of medical oxygen”

“Can CNG cylinders be used for transportation? If you can use them, that could be used to provide oxygen,” questioned the Division Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli, while dealing with the issue relating to the allocation of transpiration of medical oxygen to various hospitals in the National Capital.

The court was hearing a petition filed by two hospitals – Bram Healthcare and Batra Hospital, seeking urgent supply of oxygen, claiming that they are left with only few hours of supplies.

A senior officer from the Central government, Mr Senthil, who joined the proceedings to assist the court on this aspect, however, stated that pressure and temperature requirements of a CNG gas cylinder aren’t feasible for transporting Oxygen.

Responding to the same, the court asked him to confirm the same with technical experts. “Just find out if CNG cylinders can be used for transportation. The suggestion is only for short distance transportation,” the Bench said.

“I’ll get back to you after getting in touch with relevant technical officers,” Mr Senthil replied to the court.

Meanwhile, an Advocate who was attending the proceedings, pointed out that there was a rule prohibiting the refiling of cylinders used for one gas with another gas.

“There must be the power to exempt,” the Court said.

“There is a rule of conversion of cylinders in the same set of rules also,” said Advocate Satyakam, who appeared for the Delhi government.

During the course of proceedings, senior Advocate Rahul Mehra, appearing for the Delhi government, told the Court that Hospitals across Delhi have stopped admissions, primarily because of oxygen shortage. “They fear that oxygen would run out and refills won’t come,” Mr Mehra said.

“This is something…you have to assure them,” the Court told Mehra.

ASG Chetan Sharma, opposing the submissiom made by Mr Mehra said, “Now system is in place.”

“Solicitor General Tushar Mehta assured that 480MT would come… it was because of that we held back our order. 480 MT has not come,” the court said.

“We may emphasise that an assurance was given by Mr Mehta that the allocation made for Delhi would be met. However, that has not fructified, primarily for the reason that the point of supply are in Rourkela, Durgapur and Kalinga Nagar,” the Court noted further.

The Court has now asked the Centre and the Delhi government to file an affidavit, determining fresh position and figures and posted the matter for further hearing on Monday. ILNS/ANB/RJ

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