Thiruvananthapuram, May 13: The Kerala government on Thursday urged the Centre to immediately rush at least 300 MT oxygen from neighbouring storage points to augment the storage in hospitals in the wake of the impending cyclonic storm.

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the India Meteorological Department has issued a cyclonic storm warning forecasting heavy rain and winds in parts of the State on May 14 and May 15.

It is anticipated that there may be disruptions in electricity supply to oxygen generation plants and filling stations.

Noting that there can also be disruptions in road transport which would impede timely oxygen supply necessary to save precious lives, the Chief Minister urged the Prime Minister to rush at least 300 MT oxygen to the State from neighbouring storage points.

He said the current oxygen generation capacity in Kerala is 212.34 MT per day and at present, the storage of oxygen in hospitals is only for less than 24 hours.

"Based on scientific projections, the total daily oxygen requirement for medical purposes in Kerala could rapidly rise to 423.60 MT within the next three days", the letter said.

The Chief Minister said presently, the State is witnessing a surge of the COVID-19 cases and the number of active cases aggregates to 4.19 lakh.

He said in the second wave of the pandemic, the State is witnessing an increase in the number of patients who require critical care, including oxygen support.

"As the State government will not be able to manage the oxygen demand without assistance from the Central government, it is requested that Kerala's daily oxygen allocation may be immediately enhanced to 450 MT," it said.

The Chief Minister said the Kerala government is continuing to supply liquid medical oxygen to other States, even though the oxygen situation in the State is already precarious.

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Bengaluru, Jun 12: Karnataka police on Saturday said they have busted a Rs 290 crore plus scam that involved duping people through a mobile app after promising attractive interest on investment and two Chinese nationals were among the nine arrested.

The scam, aided by shell companies, is linked to money laundering and the suspected kingpin is a Kerala based business man with proximity to Chinese 'hawala' operators, they said.

Cyber Crime Division of CID said it has arrested accused persons, including two Chinese nationals, two Tibetans and five others acting as directors of the companies involved, and a search is on for the rest.

A complaint from Razor pay Software Private Limited said accused persons availed 'payment solutions' from them, claiming that they are in gaming, social and e-commerce businesses.

They, however, defrauded the company by using computer resources and by deviating from their original, registered line of business, the plaint said.

They started routing their transactions to collect payments from a different business named "Powerbank", an app listed in Google Playstore, cyber police said in a release.

Through customer complaints, the complainant company got to know that public invested money in the "Powerbank" app to earn interest on the invested amount.

The accused persons, after accepting the investments, neither gave the agreed interest nor the principal amount and cheated customers.

A case was registered under the Information Technology Act and 420 IPC (Cheating), the CCD said and added that the investigating team were successful in arresting nine men.

During investigation, it was found that Anas Ahmed, a Kerala based businessman, is the main person involved.

"We have also identified that he has very proximate connections with the Chinese hawala operators, which has come to light during the course of the investigation.

He had opened shell companies in the name of Bull Finch Technologies, H & S ventures and Clifford ventures to route the fraud money. Anas Ahamed is married to Chinese national and incidentally he did his studies in China," police said in the release.

Online applications hosted by him were later camouflaged and converted into different apps including Power Bank application, seeking investment from the public and promising good returns, the CCD said.

An unusual spike was seen in investments on the day Anees Ahmed announced much higher returns.

Subsequently, such apps were removed from Google Playstore and other websites and he absconded with the money.

Investigation showed Rs 290 crore inflow into his bank accounts and the CCD was successful in freezing a significant portion of it. There was a huge spike in opening of shell companies since November 2020.

"We have also observed that the Chinese handlers are in possession of a huge number of shell companies and bank accounts. Lured by the offer of the Chinese nationals, many innocent Indians and Tibetans have fallen in their trap to open shell companies and open bank accounts for them."