Govt to procure oxygen from power plants

Jamshoro Power Company says can handle demand at Jamshoro, Hyderabad hospitals


Our Correspondent May 18, 2021

KARACHI:

Sindh government has decided to procure oxygen from the Jamshoro Power Company, Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said presideing over a meeting to review the oxygen supply situation at hospitals and in the market.

Shah said his team, in collaboration with the Jamshoro Power Company Ltd (JPCL), explored the option of production of oxygen through an electrolysis process.

"Initially, oxygen produced as a by-product through electrolysis was wasted. Now, the engineers of JPCL have developed a concept to utilise it," he said.

The JPCL CEO Tanveer Jafferi told the chief minister that 92 per cent purified oxygen was produced initially and now the percentage was increased to 97.7 per cent. The PCSIR tested the oxygen being produced by JPCL and declared it fit for medical usage.

The chief minister said that the concept of oxygen production could be replicated throughout the country in the thermal power sector where electrolysis was being used as a cooling process.

The management of Jamshoro Power Plant has assured the district administration of providing enough oxygen gas to meet the demand of coronavirus patients at hospitals in Jamshoro and Hyderabad, Sindh Government Spokesman Barrister Murtaza Wahab said on Monday.

Read more: Govt to import 6,000 tonnes of oxygen: Umar

While the provincial government is trying to assist patients of coronavirus disease (Covid-19), the people too have the responsibility to prevent the spread of the pandemic, he said addressing a press conference at the Committee Room of the Sindh Assembly Building.

"We as a nation are not taking any precaution in the matter of spread of corona virus," he told the media people. As decided by the National Command Operation Center (NCOC), the Sindh government has also decided that the task force on coronavirus pandemic will meet again on Thursday and if there is no improvement, "we will take tough decisions."

There is lot of pressure from traders, and public circles to ease the restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of Covid-19, Wahab said. "If traders and the public want things to get better, they have to wear masks, follow the SOP and get vaccinated, otherwise the government will have to make tough decisions," he said.

Wahab appealed to the people not to push the government towards difficult decisions. In India, when the monster of the corona virus got out of control, there was a lack of oxygen.

Therefore the Sindh government immediately decided to ensure oxygen supply and the Sindh chief minister asked the administrations to make alternative arrangements. Jamshoro district administration has been proactive in this regard and the Jamshoro deputy commissioner has contacted the power plants.

He further said that after the test on May 14, Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR) has declared this oxygen suitable for medical purposes. Pakistan will be the first country in the South Asian region to adopt mass production and filling of oxygen using the process at power plants. "We can also produce oxygen under this process at Guddu Power Plant which can be supplied to South Punjab and Balochistan too," Wahab said.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 18th, 2021.

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