Steps being taken to operationalise all defunct oxygen plants: Minister

Minister for Industries Thangam Thennarasu and Tirunelveli Collector V. Vishnu inspect a defunct oxygen plant in SIPCOT Industrial Estate in Gangaikondan on Friday.   | Photo Credit: HAND OUT

Steps are on at a war footing to ensure early operation of all defunct plants producing oxygen across Tamil Nadu for treating COVID-19 patients, Minister for Industries Thangam Thennarasu said.

Speaking to reporters after inspecting a defunct oxygen generating unit at the SIPCOT Industrial Complex in Gangaikondan, Tirunelveli, on Friday, Mr. Thennarasu said he and District Collector V. Vishnu had held talks with the authorities of the plant which had stopped oxygen production in 2014 for various reasons. The government has promised to extend all help to resume oxygen production on an early note.

Sub-Collector, Tirunelveli, has been entrusted with the job of coordinating with officials of the plant, having the capacity of generating 2.50 tonnes of oxygen a day, to facilitate early production of the life-saving gas, he added.

“Following instructions from the Chief Minister, steps have been taken to ensure production of oxygen from every possible source even though some of these units are not functioning now. We will facilitate early operation of these plants,” Mr. Thennarasu said.

Instead of producing oxygen, the plant at Gangaikondan was now bottling the gas after getting it from various sources. Since the plant had stocked good number of oxygen cylinders when the Minister and the Collector descended on the premises, they asked the authorities to rush the cylinders to Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital which has now put 940 critically ill COVID-19 patients on oxygen support.

Mr. Thennarasu, after inspecting the ongoing anti-COVID-19 operations, inaugurated the COVID testing and a Care Centre at Gandhimathi School near Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital with 100 beds.

On the technical glitch that has hit oxygen production in Sterlite Copper’s plant, the Minister said technicians were on the job to ensure early restoration of oxygen generation.

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 1:41:27 AM |

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