Covid-19: Jammu pharma body demands 7-day lockdown in J&K
Jammu: Questioning the disparity in allocation of certain drugs used for COVID-19 treatment to Jammu and Kashmir, president of Jammu Pharmaceutical Distributors Association (JPDA) Rakesh Gupta on Wednesday demanded a seven-day complete lockdown in the Union Territory from next Saturday to tackle the pandemic.
Gupta also demanded installation of already sanctioned oxygen generation plants across hospitals in Jammu region on a war footing.
“We want to ask the Union health ministry why only 10,500 vials of Remdesivir injections were allocated to J&K as per the revised allocation list on April 24, while no allocation was made for J&K as far as Tocilizumab injections, an imported drug, is concerned on April 27,” Gupta told reporters here.
He also questioned the claim of the J&K administration that there is no shortage of COVID-19 treatment medicines in the Union Territory and demanded early availability of Remdesivir injections across all hospitals and also ensured allocation of Tocilizumab injections in the national allocation list.
“Sensing the gravity of the (COVID-19) situation across India and analysing what is going to hit us soon for which we are not prepared enough, the JPDA decided to give suggestions to the administration and put forth demands that could save precious human lives,” Gupta, a former president of Jammu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), said.
“We demand a seven-day complete lockdown from next Saturday evening, appointment of district-wise nodal officers to help with the admission of COVID-19 positive patients and establishment of area-wise flu outpatient departments (OPDs) in open spaces to reduce the burden and risk of infection in hospitals,” he said.
Among other action plans, Gupta also suggested setting up facilities for vaccination in open spaces, display of the availability of oxygen supported beds in hospitals, announcing immediate and maximum subsidy for setting up oxygen generation plants in private hospitals and big nursing homes and free movement of goods carriers within and outside the UT.
“The JPDA appeals to the Lt Governor and Chief Secretary to act now and announce a complete lockdown before it is too late. The JPDA team will be available 24×7 for any assistance to the administration,” Gupta said.
Supporting the ongoing strike by the transporters, he said if their vehicles had to run on 50 percent occupancy as per the notification issued by the government then the revised passenger fares should have been raised automatically.
He said traders, industrialists, transporters and hoteliers across J&K have suffered heavy losses during the lockdown last year, but “we can do business and earn our livelihood only if we live”.