Jignesh Mevani installs O2 plant in his constituency

Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani installs oxygen plant in his constituency

He told DH that this plant has a capacity to refill over 800 jumbo oxygen cylinders per day which can cater to hospitals in around his constituencies

Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani. Credit: PTI Photo

Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani on Saturday inaugurated the oxygen plant in his constituency Vadgam in Banaskantha district in north Gujarat. Mevani said that the plant, set up at a cost of nearly Rs1 crore from his MLA fund and one of the biggest in the state, will cater to hospitals located in several nearby constituencies.

"After a struggle of more than three months and wading through the red tape of a hostile state government, the efforts have finally brought concrete results and with the whole-hearted support of the people, we have finally set up Gujarat’s biggest oxygen plant for people in Vadgam constituency," the independent legislature said in a statement.

He told DH that this plant has a capacity to refill over 800 jumbo oxygen cylinders per day which can cater to hospitals in around his constituencies. In the inauguration, Mevani invited religious priests from different faiths to send a message of communal harmony.

The development comes nearly four months after the state charity commissioner froze the bank account of an NGO for whom Mevani had appealed for donation for the purpose of setting up the oxygen plan. The bank account was seized in the middle of a fundraising campaign during the peak of the second wave of coronavirus in his constituency and also on social media which attracted lots of donors including actor Prakash Raj. The bank account was frozen on the grounds that Mevani, despite not being a trustee of the NGO, was appealing for the funds. The matter is still under dispute.

Meanwhile, Mevani had also moved Gujarat high court seeking permission to allow him to use the Member of Legislative Assembly Local Area Development Scheme funds (MLALAD) for setting up the oxygen plant. While the matter was in the high court, the state government issued a notification allowing the MPs MLAs to use the development funds to spend on health infrastructure in view of the covid-19 pandemic. 

"Oxygen shortage claimed innumerable lives during the second wave of Covid-19 and put state governments across the country in a difficult position. To avert any possible shortage of oxygen that might emerge from the anticipated third wave, independent MLA Jignesh Mevani has now set up Gujarat's biggest oxygen plant with state-of-the-art technology for the people in his constituency and nearby districts," read the statement Mevani released.

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