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As part of Oxygen Express, naval ships sent to support operations in Lakshadweep

On April 25 morning, INS Sharda undertook the transfer of essential medical supplies to Kavaratti, and the stores consisted of 35 Oxygen cylinders, Rapid Antigen Detection Test (RADT) kits, Personnel Protective Equipment (PPE), masks and other items to fight the pandemic.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: April 25, 2021 10:09:08 pm
NavyThe operations are taking place under the Navy’s supervision in coordination with the United Territory’s administration. (Twitter: @DefenceMinIndia)

The Navy, which had been kept on standby to bring oxygen containers from outside the country if needed, joined the oxygen transport efforts on Sunday. As part of the Oxygen Express, naval ships were sent to support the Lakshadweep operations.

In a statement on Sunday, the Navy mentioned that under Kochi-based the Southern Naval Command Headquarters naval ships are progressing with the mission of Oxygen Express “in order to render support to the local administration of the Union Territory of Lakshadweep”.

On April 25 morning, INS Sharda undertook the transfer of essential medical supplies to Kavaratti, and the stores consisted of 35 Oxygen cylinders, Rapid Antigen Detection Test (RADT) kits, Personnel Protective Equipment (PPE), masks and other items to fight the pandemic.

“The disembarkation of stores was coordinated by personnel from INS Dweeprakshak at Kavaratti. The ship then continued with her mission to the island of Minicoy for disembarkation of Oxygen cylinders and medical supplies,” the Navy said.

It also stated that “41 empty Oxygen cylinders from the islands have been embarked onboard Indian Navy hired vessel, Meghna,” which then headed to Kochi for their refilling and will take them to Lakshadweep “to ensure that the Oxygen Express continues unabated”.

The operations are taking place under the Navy’s supervision in coordination with the United Territory’s administration.

“To assist the civil administration in fighting Covid 19 at the island of Kadmat, a Naval contingent comprising one doctor, two Medical Assistants and one additional sailor reached” there and the Southern Naval Command HQ “has also reserved ten beds including ICU facilities for patients from Lakshadweep at INHS Sanjivani, Kochi to cater for shortages in beds at the islands”.

Further, the Navy mentioned that its Air Station INS Garuda has also been placed on alert to extend Naval airfield facilities for helicopters ferrying patients from Lakshadweep and Air Evacuation Pods developed indigenously by the Naval Aircraft Yard, Kochi to airlift patients from the islands as well as from elsewhere are also being made ready for emergency requirements.

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