The Indian Navy has launched Operation Samudra Setu-II for shipment of Oxygen-filled containers to India. INS Kolkata & INS Talwar entered the port of Manama, Bahrain for embarking & transporting 40MT of liquid oxygen to Mumbai. INS Jalashwa is scheduled to reach Bangkok and INS Airavat is expected to reach Singapore to get medical oxygen.
"Two Indian Navy warships are bringing 40 metric tonnes of liquid oxygen to Mumbai from Bahrain," an official was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.
Meanwhile, Mumbai-based Western Naval Command has readied three hospitals with beds for COVID-19 patients. The Navy has made arrangements for COVID-19 patients at INHS Jeevanti in Goa, INHS Patanjali in Karwar, Karnataka and INHS Sandhani in Mumbai, a press release by HQ WNC said. The Navy is also exploring means to reach out to civilian hospitals to meet their requirement of medical oxygen.
The armed forces have already stepped up efforts to help the civilian population affected by COVID-19. Earlier today, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh cleared special financial powers for armed forces commanders. The official Twitter handle of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that the powers will enable formation commanders "to establish and operate quarantine facilities/ hospitals and to undertake procurement/ repair of eqpt/ items/ material/ stores, besides provisioning of various services and works required to support the ongoing effort against COVID-19".
On Thursday, Army Chief General MM Naravane met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and briefed him about the initiatives undertaken by the Indian Army to counter the spread of COVID-19. He informed the PM that the Army has already asked its medical experts to assist state governments and is in the process of setting up temporary facilities for COVID-19 patients.