Officials from the Centre say there is no community transmission of COVID-19 yet in Delhi, deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia asserted on Tuesday, and estimated that there might be 5.5 lakh coronavirus cases in the city by July 31.
IMAGE: Medics wearing PPE kits with COVID-19 suspected patients at AIIMS in New Delhi. Photograph: Manvender Vashist/PTI Photo
Delhi will need 80,000 beds by July end, he told reporters after a meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority.
The meeting was chaired by Lt Governor Anil Baijal who is also chairperson of the DDMA.
Sisodia said if old growth rate of COVID-19 is taken into account, the doubling rate in Delhi is 12.6 days and almost all participants of the meeting agreed to this.
According to authorities, the recovery rate in the national capital till Monday was 37.92 per cent.
“Officials from the Centre said at the meeting that there is no community transmission of COVID-19 virus yet in Delhi and hence, there is no need of discussion on it” Sisodia told the media after meeting.
The lieutenant governor has refused to reconsider his decision to overrule the Delhi government’s order reserving state-run and private hospitals for Delhiites, the deputy chief minister said.
He said the national capital may record 44,000 COVID-19 cases by June 15 and it would need 6,600 beds in hospitals.
“By June 30, there would be one lakh cases of coronavirus in Delhi and we will need 15,000 beds.
“It is estimated that Delhi will record 2.15 lakh cases by July 15 and 33,000 beds would be required. There might be 5.5 lakh cases by July 31 and Delhi would need 80,000 beds,” Sisodia said.
Based on the doubling rate, 5.5 lakh cases are expected to be reported in Delhi by July 31, he said.
He said people living in Delhi also need beds during COVID-19 pandemic and in view of this, the Delhi Cabinet had recently taken the decision to reserve state-run and private hospitals for Delhiites.
“The LG did not have any idea on numbers of COVID-19 cases and beds in Delhi once people from all over the country start coming to Delhi (for treatment),” Sisodia said.
In the meeting, nobody had an answer on availability of sufficient numbers of beds if COVID-19 cases continue to increase in the coming days in the national capital, he also said.
“Who will take the responsibility if there are no beds? If people are coming from all over the country, beds available in Delhi will be occupied within three, four or ten days.
“As the LG has refused to reconsider his decision, we will try to serve the people of country and Delhi as well. We will also try to expand medical facilities,” he added.
The LG”s order has created a “major problem” in the national capital, he also added.
On Monday, the LG overruled the AAP government’s order to reserve Delhi government-run and private hospitals in the national capital for Delhiites.
Delhi health minister Satyendar Jain blamed the Centre for a spurt in cases of COVID-19 in the city.
Interacting with reporters at his residence, Jain claimed that most flights had come to Delhi and Mumbai, adding that in Delhi, there are around 30,000 cases while in Mumbai, the number is 50,000
“We had requested the Centre to stop operations of all flights in Delhi, but they stopped it 15 days later.
“Secondly, people from other states were stopped in Delhi. They should have been allowed to leave for their home states,” Jain said.
Jain said the source of infection is “not known” in nearly half of the fresh cases being reported.
He also said the Kejriwal government is making all the preparations to handle the huge rush of patients estimated by June end.
“Epidemiologically, community transmission is third stage of the infection… In Delhi, of the new cases being reported, in nearly half of the cases, the source of infection is not known,” he said.
“Where will the people of Delhi go for treatment after LG’s order,” he added.
On Monday, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said the LG’s order on hospitals has created a major problem and challenge for Delhiites.
The chief minister had said that providing treatment to people coming from all the over country was a big challenge during COVID-19 pandemic.
The Delhi government would try to make arrangements to provide treatment to all those coming from outside the national capital, Kejriwal had said.
Delhi recorded 1,007 fresh coronavirus cases taking the COVID-19 tally in the city to over 29,000, and the death toll due to the disease mounted to 874.
Sixty-two COVID-19 patients died in Delhi from May 30 to June 6, and 27 of these fatalities occurred on June 5.
These deaths were reported on June 7.
The highest spike in fresh cases — 1,513– was recorded on June 3.