The Indian Railways has clarified that it has no plans at present to set up an oxygen manufacturing unit in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.
For supply and generation of industrial oxygen to the West Central Railway’s Coach Rehabilitation Workshop (CRWS) in Bhopal, a preliminary discussion was held with the oxygen manufacturing plants and the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation (PESO) to enquire about the technical and associated issues to develop a long-term plan for future requirements, West Central Railways informed Moneycontrol.
“Presently, no such plan has been approved for establishing in West Central Railway at Bhopal,” Rahul Jaipuriyar, Chief Public Relations Officer, West Central Railways, said in a written clarification to Moneycontrol.
Moneycontrol had earlier reported that the Indian Railways is planning to set up an oxygen manufacturing unit in Bhopal. “The Indian Railways will come up with a 1,000-cylinder-per day unit in Bhopal. PESO is ready to give the clearance within a day, once they apply for it. The Railways will take only seven days to come up with the plant after the clearances are in place,” Waji Ud Din, deputy chief controller of explosives and the oxygen nodal officer for PESO in Madhya Pradesh, had said.
Jaipuriyar said that there has been no discussion regarding the setting up of a medical oxygen unit with PESO.
More COVID care coaches
The Railways has lined up nearly 4,000 COVID care coaches across the country, with 64,000 beds. In Delhi, 50 coaches (with 800 beds) are deployed at the Shakurbasti station (four patients are currently admitted) and 25 coaches (with 400 beds) are available at Anand Vihar Terminal.
At Nandurbar (Maharashtra), 21 coaches (with 378 beds) are positioned. Currently, 55 patients are admitted to this facility. At Bhopal station, 20 coaches have been positioned, and 50 coaches are being readied for deployment in Punjab and 20 coaches positioned for deployment in Jabalpur.
On demand from state governments, these isolation centres will cater to the needs of patients with mild and moderate symptoms.
Oxygen Express service
The Indian Railways is continuing its journey of delivering liquid medical oxygen to various parts of the country. Till April 27, 450 metric tonnes have been delivered to Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi by six Oxygen Express trains through 26 tankers covering more than 10,000 km (in empty and loaded conditions).
Delhi has received its first Oxygen Express carrying more than 70 metric tonnes of liquid medical oxygen on April 27. So far, as per provisional estimates, Indian Railways has delivered 202 metric tonnes to Uttar Pradesh, 174 metric tonnes to Maharashtra and 70 metric tonnes to Delhi.