Adhere to allocation orders on oxygen supply, don’t expect suppliers to provide in excess: Delhi HC to hospitals

The Delhi High Court on Monday directed hospitals and nursing homes in Delhi to adhere to the allocation orders on medical oxygen supply and not expect suppliers to provide them in excess.

On Saturday, a tanker of Goyal Gases was detained at Batra Hospital which was forcing it to deliver more than allocated. The supplier had to deliver 4.8 MTs when it was supposed to deliver 2.5 MTs.

The division bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli warned the Executive Director of Batra Hospital and said such conduct will not be countenanced. Hospitals should appreciate that suppliers are required to supply to other hospitals too, said the court.

Hospitals in Delhi have been facing acute shortage of medical oxygen — crucial in treating Covid-19 positive patients, the number of which is on a rise.

As many as twelve Covid patients admitted in the ICU of Batra hospital in Mehrauli died on Saturday afternoon, with hospital authorities linking the casualties to shortage of oxygen. Among the deceased was the hospital’s gastroenteritis head Dr R K Himthani (62).

Taking note of this, Delhi High Court later that day pulled up the central government, threatening to begin contempt proceedings if its directions on supplying 490 metric tonnes (MT) of oxygen to Delhi was not complied with.

“Enough is enough. Now we mean business. Now you will arrange everything,” a division Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli told the Centre. “You (Centre) have made an allocation. You fulfill that allocation. We are not wanting anything more.”

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