New Delhi, March 22 (IANS) Appealing people to make ‘janta curfew’ a huge success by staying at home on Sunday, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has said that armed forces are fully mobilised to assist the civilian authorities to tide over the crisis.
He said collective action is the need of the hour to arrest the spread of COVID-19 and everyone has a role to play.
Singh said by staying at home and following the prescribed precautions, we can interrupt the spread of the infectious virus. He said there was no need to panic and the government was taking all necessary measures in a calibrated manner to fight the pandemic.
The Defence Minister also appreciated the efforts of the various arms and Services of the Armed Forces which have been proactive in evacuating people from COVID-19 affected countries such as China, Iran, Italy and Japan and sheltering them at various quarantine facilities.
From February 1, 2020 till date, the Indian Air Force has evacuated 1,059 people including five foreigners and quarantined them at the facilities in Manesar (Haryana), Hindan (Uttar Pradesh), Ghatkopar (Maharashtra) and Jaisalmer (Rajasthan). These are working in total synergy with the civilian authorities to ensure proper care to all evacuated citizens.
The Indian Navy has set up quarantine camp at INS Vishwakarma at Vishakhapatnam which is fully equipped to accommodate nearly 200 personnel. Navy has also set up isolation facilities at its premier hospital INHS Asvini at Mumbai. The Naval base, Kochi under Southern Naval Command (SNC), is gearing up to provide quarantine facilities for Indian nationals.A
The SNC is also actively coordinating with the Kerala state health officials and Ernakulam district administration to explore the feasibility of provisioning civil hotels/resorts for quarantining.
Besides, all Army hospitals have been kept on alert to meet any eventuality.
In addition to the operational quarantine centres, more facilities have been readied and may be made operational within 48-72 hours, if needed.
These facilities are at Jodhpur, Kolkata, Chennai, Visakhapatnam, Kochi, Dundigal near Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Kanpur, Jaisalmer, Jorhat and Gorakhpur.