Indian Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh said that the Navy is ready to assist the civilian administration to deal with the Coronavirus epidemic. Admiral Karambir Singh addressed his Navy personnel via conference on Thursday.
"Our medical teams have set up Corona Centres, isolation wards, quarantine facilities and requisitioned medical supplies and manufactured equipment in a very short time. Our ships and aircrafts are in standby and we are ready to extend support not only to our country also countries in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR)," Admiral Karambir Singh said.
The Navy Chief listed out many of the tasks that the naval officers have carried out in the last few weeks. He said that the Navy has delivered free food rations to the poor, sent essential medical supplies to areas like Andaman and North East. Singh said that the senior leadership in the Navy is also in contact with veterans to take stock of their health and well being.
Admiral Singh also lauded the monetary contribution of the naval staff to the PM CARES Fund, meant to fight national emergencies like this COVID-19 outbreak.
"We have to take care of ourselves and our families. We have to make sure that we remain 'caregivers' and not become 'care seekers'. We also have to make sure that our assets like ships and submarines are free of infection," the Navy Chief said. He also asked his officers to maintain "physical distance" instead of "social distance" saying that in the Navy, the staff is socially very close.
India has so far reported 5,865 cases of COVID-19 so far. The death toll has also mounted to 169 after 17 patients succumbed to the disease since Wednesday. So far, 477 patients have recovered and been discharged from the hospital.