Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday announced the extension of a coronavirus-induced lockdown in the city by one more week.
This is the second extension of the restrictions in the city, since the lockdown was first imposed on April 19 amid a massive rise in coronavirus cases. The latest announcement means that the curbs will now stay in effect till May 10.
The pandemic has continued to devastate the city. On Friday, Delhi recorded 27,047 new cases and 375 deaths. The positivity rate of cases in Delhi stood at 32.69% and there were 99,361 active cases.
Besides, Delhi has been facing an acute shortage of oxygen supply, hospital beds and medicines. On Saturday, 12 patients, including a doctor, died in the city’s Batra Hospital after oxygen ran out for more than an hour at the private facility.
This was the third such incident within a week’s time. On April 24, at least 20 coronavirus patients in Delhi died after the Jaipur Golden Hospital ran out of oxygen. A day earlier, 25 “sickest” coronavirus patients died overnight at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in the city amid a last-minute scramble for oxygen.
Taking note of the deaths at Batra Hospital, the Delhi High Court directed the Centre to provide Delhi 490 metric tonnes of oxygen, the quota allocated for the city. The court observed that since the allocation for Delhi was made on April 20, the requirement has not been met on a single day.
“We can’t shut our eyes to people dying in Delhi,” a bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Rekha Palli said. “Enough is enough. No one is asking for more than allocated. If you can’t supply the allocation today, we will see your explanation on Monday.”