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COVID-19 crisis in Madhya Pradesh | Kamal Nath says it’s ‘criminal negligence’

Former Madhya Pradesh Cheif Minister Kamal Nath. File   | Photo Credit: A.M. Faruqui

Former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Thursday accused the BJP government in the State of mismanaging the COVID-19 crisis and termed it as “criminal negligence” on part of the administration.

Talking to reporters in Bhopal, the senior Congress leader also alleged under-reporting of COVID-19 deaths in Madhya Pradesh. The State government has denied such allegations. Mr. Nath claimed hospitals in the State have no beds, injections, oxygen, medicines and ambulances.

“I want to know from Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan about a single hospital where all these facilities are available. It is total criminal negligence,” Mr. Nath said.

The State government should have taken note of the second wave of COVID-19 in advance, but it failed to gauge the situation, he said.

He also claimed the actual number of COVID-19 deaths in the State was being hidden and that the figures were much higher than the official statistics.

M.P. Home Minister Narottam Mishra on Tuesday denied that there was underreporting of COVID-19 deaths in the State.

Kamal Nath said during his interaction with the Congress district presidents, he was told the coronavirus had entered villages and no testing facilities were available there.

“The tests are not being conducted and even if they are done, then the reports are not being declared even in three days. By that time, there is a chance of such people spreading the infection among others,” he said.

Mr. Nath also alleged that Remdesivir injections (key anti-viral drug) were being given by BJP leaders “to their own people”, instead of members of the general public suffering from COVID-19.

Even vaccines are not available in the State and people are facing lot of problems in getting the jabs despite the State government making “tall claims” about it, he said.

Government officials should be sent to oxygen plants and drug manufacturers to get these essential medical supplies for the people, but “Principal Secretaries were sitting in Bhopal and doing nothing”, he said.

“The mismanagement has been criticised in the international media across the world...the government should focus on managing the crisis instead of managing headlines in the media,” Mr. Nath said.

On Wednesday, Madhya Pradesh reported 12,758 fresh cases of coronavirus, taking the infection count to 5,38,165, while 105 deaths pushed the State’s fatality count to 5,424, as per official data.

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Printable version | Jun 20, 2021 12:13:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/covid-19-crisis-in-madhya-pradesh-kamal-nath-says-its-criminal-negligence/article34438049.ece

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