Three naval ships bring medical supplies from Singapore, West Asia

May 10, 2021 03:52 pm | Updated 07:37 pm IST - NEW DELHI

File photo: INS Airavat

File photo: INS Airavat

In one of the single largest consignment of emergency medical supplies from abroad, Navy’s landing ship tank INS Airavat arrived at the naval dockyard in Visakhapatnam from Singapore with eight 20-tonne cryogenic oxygen tanks (empty) and other critical COVID-19 medical stores, including over 3600 oxygen cylinders, as part of Operation Samudra Setu II. In addition, INS Trikand reached Mumbai with two 27 MT (metric tonne) oxygen filled containers from Qatar.

“These ships are part of nine ships deployed for COVID relief operation ‘Samudra Setu II’ for shipment of Liquid Medical Oxygen and associated medical equipment from friendly foreign countries in the Persian Gulf and South East Asia,” the Navy said in a statement on Monday.

INS Airavat’s consignment also comprised 3,150 oxygen cylinders (empty), 500 filled oxygen cylinders, seven oxygen concentrators, 10,000 Rapid Antigen Test kits and 450 PPE kits, the Navy stated.

INS Trikand arrived in Mumbai with 40 MT of liquid Oxygen. The consignment is part of French mission “Oxygen Solidarity Bridge” to support India’s fight against COVID-19, the statement said.

INS Kolkata arrived at the New Mangalore port with two 27 MT oxygen filled containers, 400 oxygen cylinders and 47 oxygen concentrators embarked from Qatar and Kuwait. Two more warships were enroute to India from Kuwait and one ship was at Brunei to embark medical supplies, the Navy added.

Singapore has also facilitated the contribution of 300 oxygen concentrators from Olam International and Temasek foundation to Tamil Nadu. These were handed over to Chief Minister M.K. Stalin on Monday, the Singapore High Commission in India said on social media.

In addition, supplies also arrived from Egypt, Spain and the U.K. A shipment of 10 oxygen concentrators and 141 ventilators arrived from Spain while three aircraft loaded with medical equipment arrived from Egypt. “Total shipment includes 300 oxygen cylinders, 50 oxygen concentrators, 20 ventilators, 8,000 vials of Remdesivir and other medical equipment,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said on social media.

Also 1,350 oxygen cylinders arrived from the U.K. gifted by British Oxygen Company and the shipment was facilitated by Qatar Airways. “This is part of their generous contribution of 5,000 oxygen cylinders,” the MEA said in a tweet.

IAF’s initiative

As on early hours of May 10, Indian Air Force (IAF) aircraft carried out 534 sorties from various parts of the country, airlifting 336 oxygen containers of total capacity of 6,420 MT and other medical supplies and equipment, the Defence Ministry said.

IAF aircraft also carried out 84 international sorties, airlifting 81 cryogenic oxygen storage containers of total capacity of 1,407 MT along with 1,252 empty oxygen cylinders, 705 oxygen concentrators and Zeolite (respiratory oxygen raw material). The equipment has been procured from Singapore, Dubai, Thailand, United Kingdom, Germany, Belgium, Australia, Indonesia and Israel, a Ministry statement said.

Army hospitals

The Army’s Western Command is operationalising COVID-19 hospitals at the International Students Hostel of the Panjab University, Sector 25 Chandigarh; Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee Hospital, Faridabad; and the Rajindra Government Hospital, Patiala, the Army said in a statement. The hospital at Chandigarh was opened on Monday while the ones at Faridabad and Patiala would open on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively.

“The hospitals have the capacity to accommodate and treat mild to moderate / symptomatic patients suffering from COVID-19,” the statement said.

The Army had deployed its doctors, nursing officers and paramedics, provided service ambulances and trained personnel for administration and management of the hospitals. The civil administration were facilitating essential amenities, service management, uninterrupted oxygen supply, patient admission and discharge and ambulance services at the hospitals, it stated, adding that admission would be opened to all citizens and coordinated by the CMOs of the respective districts.

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