New Delhi | Jagran Politics Desk: A day after the Union government said in the Parliament that no Covid-19 deaths were specifically reported due to lack of oxygen, a war of words has ensued between members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Opposition on Wednesday.

Health Minister Bharati Pravin Pawar wrote to the Rajya Sabha yesterday (July 20) that “no deaths due to lack of oxygen were specifically reported by states and Union Territories during the second Covid-19 wave.”

This statement stirred a massive controversy as the opposition referred to the April-May crisis when the second wave of COVID-19 wreaked havoc in the country. Slamming the government Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra listed out four reasons why people died during the second wave.

“…the deaths happened because: in the pandemic year, the government increased oxygen exports by 700%, the government did not make arrangements for tankers transporting oxygen, ignoring the advice of the Empowered Group and the Parliamentary Committee, no arrangement was made to provide oxygen,” Gandhi said.

The Aam Admi Party also strongly condemned the Centre's remark stating that it is completely false. Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain also said on Wednesday that the Centre is rubbing salt on the wounds of people who have lost their family members. He also appealed to the L-G to allow the Delhi government to run the audit committee for oxygen.

“They (Centre) will soon say there was no Covid-19. If there were no deaths due to lack of oxygen, then why were hospitals going to High Court for shortages? This is completely false. We had formed an audit committee for oxygen to provide compensation to victims, which was stopped by the Centre through the L-G (Anil Baijal)," Jain said.

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister also slammed the Centre and stated that BJP is trying to twist the narrative of its “poor management of oxygen supply”.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Health Minister M. Subramaniam supported the Centre and said that the state did not face any shortage of oxygen. Bihar's Health Minister Mangal Pandey also voiced a similar opinion.

Citing this BJP’s Information Technology cell head Amit Malviya criticised the opposition for playing politics over Coronavirus. On the other hand, Congress leader KC Venugopal has said that he will file a privilege notice against the Minister of State for Health for misguiding the house.

Posted By: Sugandha Jha