In the first instance of COVID-19 in the Indian Navy, 21 personnel have tested positive at the Western Naval Command in Mumbai.
“This number includes 20 sailors of INS Angre, a shore establishment at Mumbai. Many of them are asymptomatic and have been traced to a single sailor who tested positive on April 7,” the Navy said in a statement on Saturday.
INS Angre is the shore-based logistics and administrative support establishment of the Western Naval Command in south Mumbai.
All the sailors reside in the same accommodation block at INS Angre and all primary contacts, though asymptomatic, were tested for COVID-19, the Navy stated. Following this, the entire living block was immediately put under quarantine and INS Angre too was under lockdown and all actions as per established COVID-19 protocols were being taken. “There are no cases of infection on board ships and submarines,” the Navy added.
So far, among the three services, the Army had reported eight positive cases, of whom two are doctors and one nursing assistant. “Four others are responding well to treatment and we had one case in Ladakh, he is now Coronavirus free and has rejoined duty,” Army chief Gen. Manoj Naravane said in Kashmir on Friday.
Earlier this month, in a video message to the rank and file, Navy chief Adm. Karambir Singh stated that the challenge was not over yet and it was only going to intensify in days and weeks ahead and outlined the priorities, one of which was to ensure that operational assets, specifically ships and submarines, remain free from the virus. “It is a very difficult task because physical distancing on board ships, and especially submarines, is very tough… but physically, we will maintain the required distance of six feet,” he had stated.
Major Navies across the globe, such as France and the U.S., have been badly hit by the pandemic, with a large number of personnel testing positive on board their aircraft carriers. The U.S. Navy has reported over 1,000 positive cases, mostly among personnel from four of its 11 aircraft carriers, with a majority of them aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt. In the French Navy, over 1,000 personnel have tested positive on board their sole aircraft carrier, nuclear-powered Charles de Gaulle.
News Source: The Hindu