Taking stock of preparations on the ground to ramp up medical infrastructure, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday visited Surya Hotel, which has temporarily been converted into a COVID-19 facility, to help the city deal with the surging coronavirus cases.
This is the first visit of the Chief Minister in the recent days as the national capital witnessed an alarming spurt in COVID-19 cases.
Mr Kejriwal was accompanied by his deputy Manish Sisodia.
An official said that Surya Hotel, located in New Friends Colony, has been attached with Holi Family Hospital and would offer 120 bed-facility in the next two-three days in the first phase, and thereafter, it will be extended up to 250-300 beds.
“An order had been issued to convert the hotel into COVID-19 facility on May 29, but it challenged the government’s order in a court which delivered its judgement in favour of the administration,” the official said.
He said that as part of its exercise to ramp up health infrastructure, the government has started the process to acquire around 78 banquet halls and 40 hotels and they have been attached with hospitals and nursing homes.
Delhi recorded 1,647 fresh coronavirus cases on Monday, taking the tally in the city to 42,829, and the death count due to the disease climbed to 1,400.
Two days ago, the government had directed district magistrates and other officials concerned to set up 20,000 beds within a week.
According to Delhi Corona app, out of 10,630 beds available in the city, 5,631 were occupied at 8.50 pm on Tuesday while 4,999 beds were vacant.
Last week, Kejriwal had said that Delhi would need 1.5 lakh beds by July 31 if people from other states start coming to the national capital for treatment.
On Sunday, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had held meetings with Kejriwal, Lt Governor Anil Baijal and three mayors to discuss the strategy to deal with the COVID-19 situation.
In the meeting, several key decision, including large scale testing of COVID-19 in the city and house-to-house survey in containment zones for contact tracing, had been taken.