After some COVID-19 positive cases in the Indian Army, 21 Navy personnel serving at INS Angre in Mumbai too have been tested positive for coronavirus, raising concerns in the armed forces.
It is the first such case of coronavirus being reported in the Indian Navy. There has been no case of coronavirus onboard any of the ships and submarines, clarified the Navy. Earlier, the Army has reported eight cases of the deadly virus so far.
The infected 21 personnel from the Western Naval Command are undergoing treatment at a naval hospital INHS Asvini in Mumbai’s Colaba. They have been quarantined at the hospital and all primary contacts too were tested for COVID-19.
The sailors seem to have caught the infection from another sailor who had tested positive for COVID-19 on April 7 as they were staying together in the same residential block at INS Angre.
Massive search operation is on to trace all the people who came in contact with these sailors and the entire residential block as well as INS Angre has been put under quarantine, the Navy said in a statement this morning.
Indian Navy’s dockyard, where most the submarines and war ships of the Western Naval Command are kept is in close vicinity of INS Angre.
Earlier, last week, Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh, told his personnel that vital operational assets such as ships and submarines must remain free from the virus.
“The coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented and it has never been seen before. Its impact has been extraordinary across the globe, including India,” he had said.
All the defense establishments have been told to take measure to curb the spread of coronavirus in the Armed Forces. The military cantonments, naval bases and air force stations have been sealed to contain the spread of pandemic. No parties, conferences and or travelling is allowed.
This incident comes at a time when a number of leading Navies all around the world are grappling with the coronavirus pandemic. Both the United States and French Navies have been reported to be facing the pandemic with around 500 cases in US Navy alone.