Coronavirus – Health and Governance Issues

Centre uses Disaster Management Act to restrict liquid oxygen use for non-medical purposes


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Disaster Management Act 2005

Mains level : Paper 2- Governance issues during pandemic

Order under Disaster Management Act 2015

  • Invoking the Disaster Management Act, the Centre ordered States that all liquid oxygen shall be made available to the government and will be used for medical purposes only.
  • The order said that under section 10(2)(I) and section 65 of the DM Act, States had to ensure that “liquid oxygen is not allowed for any non medical purpose”
  • The order was passed after the review of oxygen supply situation in the country.

Dealing with the shortage

  • On April 22, Centre issued order under the DM Act, making the district magistrates and senior superintendent of police personally liable to allow unhindered inter-State movement of vehicles carrying medical oxygen.
  • Despite MHA’s orders and letters, States continued to flag shortage of oxygen supply.
  • Medical oxygen to States are being provided as per daily quota decided by an empowered group of officers in central ministries.

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