Congress leader Ajay Maken has called Narendra Modi's address to the nation on the COVID-19 situation "an empty talk" and alleged that the Prime Minister chose to "relinquish all his responsibilities and put the onus of saving India on NGOs, Youth and Baal Mitras".
Maken said on Tuesday, "PM Narendra Modi's address to the nation was again today nothing but empty talk.
"The Prime Minister addressed the nation in the middle of a full-blown catastrophe. He was expected to tell the nation as to what has the government done in terms of increasing beds in hospitals, increasing oxygen output and streamlining supplies, making drugs like Remdesivir and Tocilizumab available, increasing the number of ventilators and enhancing vaccination."
"However, he chose to relinquish all his responsibilities and put the onus of saving India on NGOs, Youth and Baal Mitras", Maken said adding that the Prime Minister put the onus of doing whatever little possible on state governments and that also by practically advising them to not impose lockdown.
"The nation is going through an unprecedented and deadly crisis. It is taking days to first get the tests conducted and then the results take another two to three days. There are no beds in the hospitals, those hospitalised are not able to get life-saving drugs and oxygen," the Congress leader said.
"Common drugs are being black marketed and most hospitals in the country have just hours of Oxygen supply left. People are dying in ques and on streets- crematoria and graveyards can't accommodate the people dying," he added.
Maken reminded that migrant labourers are yet again forced into reverse migration as state after state is being left with no option but to impose a lockdown.
Maharashtra Minister Nawab Malik said, "The Prime Minister has said that lockdown should be the last option for states. But various courts in the country have given directives for lockdown. The people were hopeful that a relief package would be announced by PM for migrant workers, poor, small traders."
In his address to the nation, Prime Minister Modi said that there was a need to prevent the country from entering another lockdown.
"I urge states to use lockdown only as a last resort," PM Modi said, adding that they should try their best to avoid lockdown, and focus on micro containment zones instead. He also urged people to come forward in this hour of crisis to help those in need, expressing appreciation for NGOs already working in this regard.
The Prime Minister said that one shouldn't lose patience no matter what the situation is and remarked that the steps announced in the last few days will help in improving the situation.
The COVID-19 situation in India has been worsening amid the second wave of coronavirus infections. For the past four days, the country has been reporting in excess of two lakh coronavirus infections and over 1,000 related deaths on a daily basis.