20 flights have arrived in India with foreign help, but in many of these flights, oxygen concentrators and remodevir medicine have been stuck on the custom for weeks. Officials told NewsBust that they are facing ‘problems of logistics and compatibility, which is causing delays’. An official said that ‘the first priority is to bring foreign aid to government hospitals because they provide facilities free of cost to the patients.’
He informed that oxygen cylinders from UK have been sent to Lady Hardinge Hospital, Safdarjung, AIIMS in Delhi, and DRDO hospitals in Delhi, Ahmedabad and Patna.
Delay in flights carrying medical supplies from US, path not cleared till Wednesday
What is the process
The officer said that offers of help are being processed in many categories, such as – Government to Government, Private to Government, Private to States, Private Sector, Indian Overseas and NGO etc. Then the offers which come, are processed, such as – oxygen cylinders, oxygen concentrators, oxygen making machines, ventilators, oxygen beds, medicines, etc. Offers are accepted immediately.
These offers are sent to the Union Health Ministry, which puts it on an inter-ministerial group of WhatsApp to decide what to approve. Officials said that the problem is that some offers come from a different specialty, so the technical team sees them.
So far, 20 flights have arrived from abroad. These include life-saving medicines, including some 900 oxygen cylinders, 1,600 concentrators and 1,217 ventilators. But there is a problem of logistics in getting them to their destination. The official said that ‘we are trying to save lives, but we are fighting against time’.
Central government granted exemption from customs and cess on the import of relief materials of Corona
The Finance Minister’s Central Board of Direct Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has released an online form today to speed up the process of custom clearance of medicines and equipment related to Kovid at airports and ports.
Questions raised in the US
In a press briefing of the US State Department on Thursday, a journalist questioned about the help being sent to India. The journalist said that ‘We are sending goods to India by filling them in planes. But our journalist in Delhi has told us that even after trying for two days, he has not been able to find out who is carrying oxygen concentrators, medicines, or how much help has arrived. The journalist said that there is no such website or transparent system where people can apply and get help. In such a situation, the help that is being sent by spending the money of American taxpayers, it is seen that how much help we are sending and how the help is being distributed? ‘
On this question, State Department Deputy Spokesperson Jalina Porter said that there is no information about it on any ‘special website, but we are committed to help our partners in India.’