New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday announced that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government has decided to extend the lockdown in the national capital for another week amid the massive spike in coronavirus cases. The ongoing lockdown was scheduled to conclude at 5 am on May 3.

"Lockdown in Delhi is being extended by one week," said Kejriwal in a tweet.

Kejriwal had imposed a lockdown in Delhi on April 19 after the national capital's COVID positivity rate increased to over 30 per cent. On April 25, he extended the restriction by another week, saying COVID-19 infection is still continuing to wreak havoc in the national capital.

"Public opinion is also that lockdown should increase. So the lockdown is being extended for one week," the Delhi Chief Minister had said last week.

Delhi has emerged as a COVID-19 hotspot in the country with the city reporting over 300 fatalities over the last nine days. On Friday, it had reported 375 deaths while 395 fatalities were reported on Thursday. The continous surge in fatalities has taken Delhi's death toll 16,147, a fatality rate of 1.40 per cent. 

Delhi also reported over 27,000 cases on Friday with a positivity rate of 32.69 per cent that took its total caseload and active tally to 11.49 lakh and 99,361 respectively.

The continuous surge in cases has led to an acute shortage of essential medical equipment, including liquid oxygen, that has led the death of several COVID patients. On Saturday, 12 patients, including a doctor, in Delhi's Batra Hospital lost their lives after the oxygen ran out of the facility.

Following the incident, Kejriwal expressed his grief and urged the Centre to quickly supply medical oxygen to the national capital, saying the Delhi government is receiving SOS calls from all hospitals in the city-state.

"This news is very painful. Their lives could have been saved -- by giving them oxygen on time. Delhi should get its quota of oxygen. Can't see our people dying like this. Delhi needs 976 tonnes of oxygen, but it received only 312 tonnes yesterday. How will Delhi breathe in such a less amount of oxygen?" Kejriwal tweeted in Hindi.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma