55 days, 23 thousand km journey and about 4 thousand Indian citizens return from abroadJuly 9, 2020
New Delhi : In the wake of the deadly corona virus spreading across the world, India started Operation Samudra Setu on 5 May 2020 to evacuate its citizens trapped abroad. The 55-day campaign has now ended. During this operation 3992 citizens were brought home. According to the Press Information Bureau (PIB), it was participated by Indian Navy ships Jalashv (Landing Platform Dock), Airavat, Shardul and Magar (Landing Ship Tanks), which successfully covered the expedition by covering a distance of more than 23 thousand km during this period. Was instrumental in ending it. Let me tell you that the Indian Navy has carried out similar evacuation operations in the past under Operation Sukoon (Beirut) in 2006 and Operation Rahat (Yemen) in 2015.
The Indian Navy took up this challenge in a very difficult period. During this campaign, the biggest challenge before the Navy was to prevent any kind of infection from spreading on the ship. Stringent rules and plans were prepared for this and medical / safety protocols were implemented for the operational environment of the ships. During this operation the best of the Indian Navy and the ships that were suited to this expedition were selected.
Along with following social distance standards, necessary medical arrangements were also made to prevent the spread of infection. Special provisions were made in these vessels for this operation. These included separate arrangements for onboard treatment (sick bay) or clinics with equipment and facilities related to Kovid-19. Female officers and military nursing staff were also deployed for women passengers. All passengers were provided with basic facilities and medical facilities.
During this campaign, all the crew on the Indian Navy ship smiled when a pregnant woman on her return to India gave birth to a newborn within a few hours of reaching Kochi on the occasion of International Mother’s Day. With this, this moment became very special for naval personnel and women.
Let us also tell you here that in the time of this global crisis, the Indian Navy employees have used Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Navigator, Hand Held Temperature Sensor, Assisted Respiratory System, 3-D Printed Face Shield, Portable Multi-Feed Various customized equipment designed for oxygen manifolds, ventilators, air evacuation stretcher pods, baggage disinfectants, etc. Most of these were used on ships anchored in Operation Samudra Setu and excellent equipment was also made available to the host countries from where the evacuation operations were carried out.
Another landing ship (tank) Kesari was used in Mission Sagar to transport 580 tonnes of food aid and medical stores including Ayurvedic medicines for Maldives, Mauritius, Madagascar, Comoros Iceland and Seychelles. Kesari covered 14,000 kilometers in 49 days. As part of the mission, a health team was also deployed in Mauritius and Comoros.
Let us tell you that in December last year, the deadly corona virus was spread all over the world from Wuhan city of China and today there have been 11,981,301 cases in its entire world. At the same time, 547,324 people have died in the whole world so far. Currently, America is the most vulnerable to corona virus where more than 3 million cases have been reported and more than 1.30 lakh people have died. India ranks third in the world in terms of number of corona infections.