Amritsar: Six patients, five of whom were infected with COVID-19, died at a private hospital in Punjab’s Amritsar on Saturday due to a shortage of oxygen supply, hospital authorities said. Neelkanth Hospital authorities said they received only a few oxygen cylinders after the patients died and suppliers told them that they were giving priority to government hospitals.Also Read - 25 Patients Dead At Jaipur Golden Hospital In Delhi Due To Oxygen Shortage, 215 More Patients Still Critical

“Despite the district administration being repeatedly asked to extend help, no one turned up to do the needful,” Sunil Devgan, the chairman and managing director of Neelkant hospital, alleged. Also Read - Delhi’s Saroj Hospital Suspends Patient Admission Due to Oxygen Shortage, Discharges Old Patients

“Six patients, including two women, died due to the shortage of oxygen,” he said. Also Read - Delhi’s Batra Hospital With 350 COVID Patients Receives Oxygen Supply After SOS, Says Had to Plead For 12 Hours

After the death of patients, merely five oxygen cylinders were supplied to the hospital, Devgan said.

Despite repeated attempts, no district official could be reached for comment.

The hospital chairman claimed that three main oxygen suppliers have said that government hospitals are being prioritised in terms of oxygen supply.

Heavy police force has been deployed outside the oxygen units to prevent oxygen supply to private hospitals, Devgan alleged.

Of the six patients who died at the hospital on Saturday, two were from Gurdaspur, one from Tarn Taran district and the remaining three were from Amritsar.

Meanwhile, Punjab Minister OP Soni said, “Amritsar’s Neelkanth Hospital authorities should have brought the matter of oxygen shortage to the notice of the administration. An inquiry committee has been set up to investigate the matter.”

(With PTI inputs)