May 19, 2021

Assam promises 100% free power to new oxygen plants to prepare for Covid crisis

The Assam government on Wednesday decided to provide 100% free power supply to new oxygen plants set up in the state to avoid a possible crisis in oxygen supply to Covid-19 patients.

The second cabinet meeting of the new government also decided to give 100% free power supply to closed oxygen plants that wanted to resume operations and to the new units of existing plants.

“All existing oxygen plants will be given 20% free power. All these decisions would come into effect from 1st January 2021, but financial implications will be from 1st April 2021,” chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma tweeted.

Assam reported 73 Covid-19 fatalities on Tuesday taking the death toll to 2,344, while 5,835 new cases pushed the tally to 340,858, the National Health Mission (NHM) said. Currently, the state has a total of 46,393 active cases, it added. All the states in the country have been augmenting medical oxygen supplies to meet its demand to treat a record number of Covid-19 infections during the ongoing second wave of the disease.

At present Assam has a daily requirement of nearly 20 MT (metric tonne) of oxygen. The state’s production capacity is around 84.5 MT daily. Assam is giving 16 MT of oxygen daily to Meghalaya to meet the neighbouring state’s requirements.

On Wednesday, the cabinet decided that the chief executive members of the Bodoland Territorial Region (BTR) and the Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao autonomous district councils will be accorded the status of cabinet ministers.

It was also decided to appoint Debojit Saikia as the new advocate general of the state.

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