On Friday 23 April Thirteen COVID-19 patients died in a hospital fire in Maharashtra.

According to the police, a fire broke out at Vijay Vallabh COVID-19 hospital in Virar following which affected patients were shifted to nearby hospitals.

As per the preliminary report, the fire broke out due to a short circuit in the AC unit of the ICU.

“13 people have died after a fire broke out in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) around 3 am today. 21 patients including those in critical condition have been shifted to another hospital,” said Dr. Dilip Shah, official, Vijay Vallabh COVID-19 care hospital, Virar.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed condolences on the loss of lives saying, “The fire at a COVID-19 hospital in Virar is tragic. Condolences to those who lost their loved ones. May the injured recover soon.”

The PM has approved an ex-gratia of Rs. 2 lakh each from PMNRF for the next of kin of those who have lost their lives due to the hospital fire and Rs. 50,000 to those seriously injured.

Saddened by the loss of lives due to tragic fire at a Hospital in Palghar, Maharashtra. My condolences to the bereaved families. Praying for the speedy recovery of the injured, said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh.

This comes just days after 22 COVID-19 patients died at a hospital in Nashik following the disruption of oxygen supply.

The incident occurred on Wednesday afternoon when the oxygen supply to patients stopped suddenly because of a malfunction in the main storage at Dr. Zakir Hussain Hospital, run by the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC).

The tank from which liquid oxygen leaked was operationalized just 21 days before the incident.

An FIR was registered in the early hours of Thursday at the Bhadrakali police station in Maharashtra’s Nashik city against unidentified persons under Indian Penal Code Section 304-A (causing death by negligence).

A total of 157 patients were undergoing treatment in the 150-bed COVID-19 hospital when the incident occurred.

All the deceased, including 10 women, were in the age group of 33 to 74 years.

Meanwhile, a plea has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking an independent judicial enquiry into the oxygen leak incident in a Nashik hospital.

The PIL filed by NGO ‘Save Them India Foundation’ has sought setting up of three-member Enquiry Commission under the chairmanship of a retired apex court judge to probe the incident, reported PTI.