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BJP MLAs, MPs & Ministers Flag Their Govt’s Lapses in COVID Fight

Several BJP leaders have raised concerns about how their government has been handling the COVID crisis.

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Video Producer: Naman Shah

Video Editor: Abhishek Sharma

With the current COVID crisis showing no signs of improvement, several BJP MLAs, MPs, and ministers have now raised concerns over the government's lapses in managing the COVID catastrophe.

Uttar Pradesh

In Uttar Pradesh, BJP legislators were complaining about the inefficiency of the healthcare system, even before the Yogi government ordered to 'seize properties' of those spreading 'rumours' about oxygen shortage on 25 April.

Uttar Pradesh’s Law Minister Brijesh Pathak wrote a letter on 12 April to the state’s top bureaucrats about how even he was unable to arrange for medical attention in these times, throwing into question the state’s claims about doing a good job of managing the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a letter to the additional chief secretary (medical and health) and the principal secretary (medical education), the state’s law minister drew attention to the death of celebrated author Yogesh Parveen. Pathak wrote that he was contacted when Parveen took ill suddenly. “I myself spoke to the chief medical officer (CMO) and requested him to provide an ambulance and medical facilities… it is a matter of regret that even after many hours, he did not get an ambulance and he passed away as a result of not receiving medical care on time,” his viral letter read.

Pathak highlighted many shortcomings in the state’s health system.

BJP MP from Mohanlalganj Kaushal Kishore tweets video on 24 April:

Kaushal Kishore, who lost his elder brother to COVID recently, complained of several shortcomings due to which patients are suffering. He has written to UP CM Yogi Adityanath and has tweeted several videos in which he appears to be helpless.

Meerut BJP MP writes to UP CM on 26 April:

Ranjendra Agrawal, member of Parliament from Meerut, one of the worst COVID-hit cities of Uttar Pradesh wrote to Yogi Adityanath.

Government as well as private hospitals in Meerut are struggling with lack of oxygen…Meerut's current requirement is 35 MT oxygen gas, but it has only been supplied 10 MT.

On 28 April, Nawabganj MLA Kesar Singh Gangwar succumbed to COVID but after his death his letter addressed to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on 18 April, seeking a hospital bed in Delhi, went viral on social media.

His son later alleged that no one picked his call from the CM's office.

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At least four BJP MLAs in the state have died of COVID in the ongoing second wave. Besides Gangwar, Lucknow (West) legislator Suresh Kumar Srivastava passed away on 23 April, Ramesh Chandra Diwakar from Auraiya Sadar on 22 April and Dal Bahadur Kori from Salon Assembly seat in Raebareli on 7 May.

Gola Gokran Nath BJP MLA writes to District Magistrate on 29 April:

Arvind Giri, BJP MLA from Gola Gokran Nath in Lakhimpur Kheri wrote to the District Magistrate, “In the past 10 days, hundreds of people including two dozen friends lost their lives due to the lack of oxygen. This is the ground reality.”

Kanpur MP Satyadev Pachauri writes to Deputy CM:

On 6 May, BJP Kanpur MP wrote to Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, who is also the minister in-charge of the city. He told that most of the death cases in Kanpur are of those who couldn't get timely treatment, and these people died either in ambulances outside hospitals or at their homes.

Kanpur has one of the highest COVID caseloads in the state.

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Mohammadi BJP MLA pens letter to CM on 7 May:

BJP MLA from Mohammadi constituency in Kheri, Lokendra Pratap Singh, wrote to CM Adityanath complaining of oxygen shortage in his constituency.

In his letter, he pleaded, “We stand helpless and see our people die. We have severe shortage of oxygen and that's the cause of a majority of deaths.”

Union Minister Santosh Gangwar raises red flags about state’s healthcare system:

On 8 May, Union Minister Santosh Gangwar highlighted several lapses that trouble patients in his constituency of Bareilly. Delay in hospital admission, black-marketing of medical equipments, unresponsive medical officers and oxygen shortage were some of the issues raised in his letter to the chief minister.

Basti MP Harish Dwivedi and Bhadohi MLA Dinanath Bhaskar are some other legislators who have written to the CM highlighting the crippling healthcare system.

MLA makes video appeal after struggling to provide treatment to his wife:

Ramgopal “Pappu” Lodhi, BJP MLA from Jasrana made a video appeal to CM Yogi Adityanath, in which he narrated his plight to provide a treatment to his COVID positive wife.

When influential public legislators of the ruling party have to go through so much difficulty to get treatment for their family members, one can only imagine the hardships common citizens face.
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Madhya Pradesh

BJP MLAs in MP have also spoken out on the shortcomings of the state's fight against COVID. In a letter to MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, MLA from Maihar, Narayan Tripathi wrote, "Please save Madhya Pradesh....hospitals don't have beds and ventilators; people are dying due to lack of oxygen; medicines are not available."

Another BJP MLA, Rameshwar Sharma, threatened to go on strike if his concerns over Bairagarh's health system were not addressed. Former Morena MP and ex-MP Cabinet minister Anup Mishra also criticised the government over rampant black-marketing of oxygen and remdesivir.

Former MP Chief Minister Sunderlal Patwa’s son and Bhojpur MLA Surendra Patwa wrote to health minister Prabhuram Choudhary raising concerns over the mismanagement in hospitals. His letter read, “30 COVID beds reserved for my constituency are very less and disproportionate with respect to its population. Poor patients are forced to go in private hospitals where they are exploited.”

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

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