Kerala CM Pinarayi seeks 1000 tonnes of oxygen, 50 lakh Covishield doses from Centre

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Wednesday requested the Centre to provide at least 1000 tonnes of imported Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) and 50 lakh doses of Covishield and 25 lakh doses of Covaxin to the state in view of the surge in COVID-19 cases.

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vijayan also sought PSA plants, oxygen concentrators and ventilators on a priority basis, considering the fact that Kerala has one of the highest active caseloads in the country.

Since the overall projected requirement of liquid medical oxygen in the state is rising, the buffer storage within the state needs to be augmented urgently keeping in view the depletion of storage due to heavy daily demand, he said.

"In order to augment the storage, we require at least 1000 tonnes of imported Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO). I request that the Ministry of External Affairs may be advised to allot the required quantity partially from the current tranche of imports and balance from future imports," the chief minister said.

Allotment of 500 MT of LMO from the nearest steel plant to the state may also be advised, he said in the letter.

On vaccination, the Kerala CM asked the Centre to take into account the number of persons awaiting second dose of vaccination as also the number of those registered for the first dose, while determining further allotment of vaccines to various states.

"Accordingly, I request the allotment of 50 lakh doses of Covishield and 25 lakh doses of Covaxin to Kerala," Vijayan said.

He also said that the southern state would be in the forefront of the country's fight against the pandemic, joining the efforts of the Union Government.

The CM appreciated the support extended by the Centre in the state's collective response to the COVID-19.

Kerala logged 37,190 fresh cases on Tuesday, while 26,148 people were cured, pushing the total caseload to over 17 lakh and recoveries to 13.39 lakh, according to official figures.

(With PTI inputs)

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