Let lockdown extension decision come after May 22: Joshi

Union Minister Pralhad Joshi and MLC Pradeep Shettar inspecting the Oxygen on Wheels vehicle donated by JITO to KIMS Hospital in Hubballi on Monday.  

Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, Coal and Mines Pralhad Joshi has said that his suggestion to the State government is that it will be apt to take a decision on continuation of lockdown after assessing the situation after May 22 as the ongoing lockdown will be in force till May 24.

Speaking to presspersons after formally handing over an Oxygen on Wheels vehicle donated by Jain International Trade Organisation (JITO) on KIMS Hospital premises in Hubballi on Monday, Mr. Joshi said that he has not seen the expert committee report on lockdown continuation but he will suggest to the government to take a decision after May 22.

The Union Minister said that it will take time for the surge in the COVID-19 cases to come down and to check further spread, lockdown will be implemented strictly.

Regarding black fungus cases, he said that he spoke to experts on the issue and also the Union government’s Health Secretary over telephone regarding supply of adequate quantity of medicine required for the treatment of this condition. “I have also spoken to the State Health Minister and the Secretary concerned regarding purchase of requisite medicine,” he said.

Mr. Joshi said that although the number of positive cases in the country was high, the mortality percentage was less. But even if one person died of the pandemic, it will be a matter of grief, he said.

He said that the district has oxygen stock that will suffice the requirement for the next eight to 10 days. So, more oxygen beds will be added now. The 50 tonnes of oxygen that arrived from Kuwait will be distributed among various districts of North Karnataka, he said.

Emphasising the need for patients to approach hospitals early, Mr. Joshi said that those who approached hospitals in the initial stages of infection itself have recovered now. He also appealed to people not to unnecessarily venture out of their houses for their own safety.

Oxygen on Wheels

The Oxygen on Wheels vehicle donated by JITO is a school van converted for emergency purposes. JITO president Shantilal Oswal said that COVID-19 patients requiring oxygen could wait in the bus and use oxygen till bed arrangements are made at KIMS. “Six patients can get oxygen and other facilities in the bus, at a time. Six oxygen concentrators of nine litres capacity each have been installed in the bus. In the coming days, another vehicle will be donated to the Dharwad District Hospital,” he said.

Member of Legislative Council Pradeep Shettar, KIMS Director Ramalingappa Antaratani, Shankranna Munavalli of KLE Society, Rakesh Katharia, Gautam Oswal, Kishwan Katharia and others of JITO were present.

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Printable version | Jun 17, 2021 2:49:03 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/let-lockdown-extension-decision-come-after-may-22-joshi/article34581425.ece

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