Coronavirus: Here is how the Indian Army Helps Civil Administration during the COVID-19 Pandemic

New Delhi: The Indian Airforce has initiated its transport fleets to transport essential equipment, and medicine and warships have been kept on reserve for swift deployment as India gets ready to face the most challenging phase of COVID-19.

The Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singhand has taken the stock preparedness level of the armed forces has directed that all support must be made available to the civil administrations that are coordinating an effort to keep the situation under control.

While the quarantine facilities have already been arranged by the armed forces and made available to the civil administration, the defence and public sectors are working together to produce the essential medical equipment. The air-force has been activated to transport the medical supplies to Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Manipur, and Nagaland on an urgent basis, given the disruption of land transport.

The air force has confirmed that it has lifted 25 tonnes of supplies in the past three days, and all of its transport fleets are now geared to meet the emerging demands from across the country. The AN 32 transport, C 17 heavy lifter, and C 130J Special Operations aircraft are being tasked to ferry essentials on the request of the civil authorities.

Also, the smaller Dronier aircraft are being operated by both navy and air force to carry the samples for testing and the medical teams that need to be sent on an urgent basis. As per the air force spokesperson, the medical supplies include the personal protection equipment, hand sanitizers, surgical gloves, thermal scanners, and medical personals.

Even the navy has been kept its warships on standby so that when required, they can be utilized for transporting a large number of goods to coastal regions and islands.

The Chief Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat has also informed the Defence Ministry that 9000 hospital beds have been made exclusively available for the COVID-19 cases, aside from the quarantine facilities that are functional in various parts of the country. 

As per the directive given by the Defence Minister to help the neighboring nations, the army chief General MM Naravane has prepared the armed forces medical services that will shortly be dispatching critical medical equipment to Nepal. Around 8500 doctors and support staff are also made available to extend assistance to the civil administration.