From steel companies to engineering units and the state-run Railways, PSUs have joined hands to fill the oxygen gap and help save precious lives. Several PSUs have also added hospital beds and enhanced capacities in their medical units to help treat Covid cases.
Leading the charge is Steel Authority of India (SAIL) which has increased production of liquid medical oxygen (LMO) from 500 metric tonnes in the second week of April to about 1,100 metric tonnes per day from its plants situated at Bhilai, Rourkela, Bokaro, Durgapur and Burnpur.
SAIL has also loaded 950 metric tonnes of LMO on 14 Oxygen Express trains for various parts of the county from plants at Bokaro, Rourkela and Durgapur. It will add 2,500 additional hospital beds with oxygen facility near its plants across the country for treating Covid patients.
State-run transport behemoth Railways has so far run 27 Oxygen Express trains carrying 1,585 metric tonnes of LMO. Another six are on the way for various destinations with 463 metric tonnes of LMO. Engineering and manufacturing PSU Bhel is supplying medical oxygen in Bhopal and Haridwar, while RINL, which is on the verge of privatisation, has supplied 1,300 metric tonnes of LMO.
GAIL is setting up pressure swing absorption (PSA) medical oxygen-generation plants at 10 places, while IOC is supplying oxygen to Delhi, Haryana and Punjab. IOC has also converted unused LNG tankers into oxygen carriers and is diverting new LNG tankers for oxygen supply.
Oil PSUs are setting up PSA medical oxygen generation plants at 93 locations across the country. Coal India has scaled up emergency utility equipment with over 1,400 oxygen cylinders. Other PSUs such as Cochin Shipyard, BEL, MDL, HAL, PFC, SJVN, NLC and RCF are also undertaking steps to augment supply of LMO as well as expanding hospital facilities.