Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday expressed grief over the death of at least 22 COVID-19 patients at a Nashik hospital after the oxygen supply was interrupted due to a leakage in the storage plant.
Mr Modi described the tragedy as heart-wrenching.
The patients died due to the interrupted oxygen supply at a civic hospital for COVID-19 patients in Maharashtra's Nashik following the leakage from an oxygen storage plant, District Collector Suraj Mandhare said.
Mr Modi tweeted, "The tragedy at a hospital in Nashik because of oxygen tank leakage is heart-wrenching. Anguished by the loss of lives due to it. Condolences to the bereaved families in this sad hour."
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday announced financial assistance of ₹5 lakh each to the families of 22 patients. Expressing grief over the incident, Mr Thackeray also announced a thorough probe into it.
"The kin of every person died in this incident will get compensation of Rs five lakh. I appeal to people to not indulge in any kind of politics," he said in a statement.
"The oxygen leakage that led to the death of 22 people is a shocking incident. I cannot express my grief in words. Such incidents are devastating, especially when we are trying hard to save every COVID-19 patient."
Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari expressed anguish over the deaths.
"I was deeply anguished to know about the death of innocent Covid-19 patients in the unfortunate incident of Oxygen tanker leakage at the Dr Zakir Hussain Hospital in Nashik. I convey my condolences to the next of those who lost their lives and wish speedy recovery to the affected persons," the governor said in a message.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi condoled the deaths and urged the Maharashtra government to provide all assistance to the affected.
"The news of patients' death at Nashik's Zakir Hussain Hospital is extremely tragic. My heartfelt condolences to the aggrieved families.
"I appeal to the state government and party workers to provide all possible assistance," Mr Gandhi tweeted.
"I am deeply distressed by the unfortunate incident of patients dying due to gas leaks in a hospital's oxygen tank in Nashik, Maharashtra. My deepest condolences to the families who lost their loved ones in this accident. I wish all other patients a quick recovery," President Ram Nath Kovind said in a tweet in Hindi.