Taj Mansingh Hotel to be converted into COVID facility

New Delhi: With 1,859 fresh infections, the total number of coronavirus cases rose to 44,688 on Tuesday. Ninety-three fresh deaths were also reported taking the death toll to 1,837.

According to an order issued by the Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM) of Chanakyapuri, rooms in the luxury Taj Mansingh Hotel in Lutyens’ Delhi will be placed at the disposal of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH) for using it as an attached COVID-19 facility.

The move to attach it with the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital (SGRH), a dedicated COVID-19 facility, comes in pursuance of government efforts to meet the projected requirement of 1.5 lakh beds in healthcare facilities in Delhi by July end.

Taj Mansingh Hotel, a five-star hotel of the Tata group, has nearly 292 rooms.

In a related development, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia visited the Surya Hotel in New Friends Colony in southeast Delhi, another dedicated COVID-19 facility that has been attached to the Holy Family Hospital, to review the arrangements.

Following the inspection, Kejriwal said the Surya Hotel will become operational with 120 beds in the next 2-3 days in the first phase and the facility will gradually be ramped up to 250-300 beds.

“There is a requisition of 30-35 hotels in Delhi with a total bed capacity of 3,000-3,500 beds, Kejriwal said.

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.

Accordingly, on June 13, the district magistrates and other officials concerned were directed to make arrangements for 20,000 additional beds to accommodate more COVID-19 patients within a week.

An official said 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.

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Hotels will have 4,000 beds, while banquets halls will have 11,000 beds.

Separately, at least 50 coaches with 800 beds have already been stationed at Shakur Basti railway station but none of them are in use so far.

“Another 500 more such isolation coaches for COVID-19 patients have to be deployed in Delhi and we are finalising the stations where they can be kept,” Railway Board Chairman V K Yadav had said on June 15.

According to the Delhi Corona app, out of 10,630 beds available in the city, 5,631 were occupied until 8.50 pm on Tuesday, while 4,999 beds were vacant.

The order to convert Taj Mansingh into a dedicated COVID-19 facility said in overall imminent public interest the rooms at the hotel at the Man Singh Road be placed at the disposal of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital with immediate effect.

Taj Mansingh Hotel authorities did not offer any immediate comments on the development.

Kejriwal’s visit to the Surya Hotel came after the High Court permitted the government to attach the hotel to the Holy Family Hospital, which is a dedicated COVID-19 facility, for the treatment of patients.

On May 29, the Health Department ordered attaching five hotels — Hotel Crowne Plaza, Hotel Surya, Hotel Sidhartha, Hotel Jivitesh and Hotel Sheraton — to hospitals as attached dedicated COVID-19 facilities.

The May 29 order also fixed a tariff for the same Rs 5,000 for five-star hotels and Rs 4,000 for four-star hotels.

The linked hospital shall be paid an amount, not greater than Rs 5,000 per patient per day for their medical services of COVID-19 patients inclusive of all consumables, services of doctors, nurses, paramedical staff and nursing staff as per norms, the order had said.

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Hotel Crowne Plaza and Hotel Surya went to the Delhi High Court against the order.

The ruling came on Monday allowing the Delhi government to attach the Hotel Surya with the Holy Family hospital, a government statement said.

A two-member committee of AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria and Niti Aayog member V K Paul told the High Court that it was advisable as well as feasible to use Hotel Surya and Hotel Crowne Plaza, Okhla, as extended COVID facilities.

Meanwhile, the last rites of some COVID-19 victims were conducted by hospitals here following a directive of Home Minister Amit Shah and with the consent of their families, the Ministry of Home Affairs said.

The last rites of 36 more coronavirus victims in the national capital will be carried out on Wednesday, it said.

However, it is not immediately known the total number of victims whose last rites were performed on Tuesday.

On June 13, Shah held separate meetings with Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, Kejriwal, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, mayors and commissioners of Delhi’s three municipal corporations to strengthen the strategy to fight the pandemic.

A day later, he also visited the Delhi-government run LNJP hospital and took stock of the situation.

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain has been admitted to the Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital due to high grade fever and a sudden drop of oxygen levels in his body on Monday night. He later tested negative for coronavirus.

He will be again tested for coronavirus on Wednesday.

Last week, Kejriwal had also undergone a coronavirus test after he complained of fever and throat pain. He too tested negative.

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