Rajnath Singh asks armed forces to assist civilian authorities to fight COVID-19

Rajnath Singh also appreciated the forces and various departments of MoD in evacuating Indian nationals as well as foreigners from COVID-19 affected countries and ensuring them proper care at various quarantine facilities.  (File)

Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh Thursday urged the armed forces, Defence PSUs and other organisations to gear up their preparedness and provide all required assistance to the civilian administration to fight the coronavirus pandemic.

On Thursday, Singh chaired a review meeting with Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, Chiefs of Army, Navy, Air Force, and other senior officials to discuss the action plan to deal with the coronavirus outbreak in the country.

At the meeting, the Defence Minister was briefed about the various measures and assistance provided so far by the armed forces. So far, the quarantine facilities of the armed forces have handled 1,462 evacuees and discharged 389. Presently, 1,073 persons are being provided care at the facilities in Manesar, Hindan, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur and Mumbai. Additional quarantine facilities are on standby with 950 beds capacity.

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) laboratories have also stepped in by manufacturing 20,000 litres of sanitiser and supplying it to various organisations, including 10,000 litres to Delhi police. DRDO has also supplied 10,000 masks to Delhi police personnel.

Besides, DRDO is also tying up with some private companies to make personal protection equipment such as body suits and also ventilators

Ordnance Factory Board has also ramped up production of sanitisers, masks and body suits. Bharat Electronics Limited is also engaged in manufacturing of ventilators.

Also, the Army medical teams deployed in the Maldives have since returned after completion of their mission and are ready to assist. Army medical teams and two ships of Navy are on standby to provide required assistance to friendly countries in the neighbourhood.

Singh also appreciated the forces and various departments of MoD in evacuating Indian nationals as well as foreigners from COVID-19 affected countries and ensuring them proper care at various quarantine facilities.

Indian Army issues fresh instructions to fight COVID-1

– Quarantine/isolation centres – Identify additional infrastructure for setting up of quarantine/ isolation centres in each station for own personnel.
– Liaison with civil administration: Indian Army is prepared to extend its network of hospitals and laboratory facilities to assist civil administration at COVID-19 hotspots.
– Plan for augmenting public health experts in severely affected areas: Prepare a plan for sidestepping medical personnel from lesser-affected areas to augment health experts in severely affected areas if required.
– Additional training of own medical personnel at various hospitals to be better prepared for COVID-19.

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Author: Sham