Armed Forces Must Remain Safe From COVID-19 To Help People: Bipin Rawat

Bipin Rawat - Sakshi Post

NEW DELHI: Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat said that the three Indian Armed forces must ensure that they are safe from COVID-19 so as to support people during these times. He said that all meetings have been taking place via video conferencing.

"As far as defence services are concerned, we do understand our responsibility that at this time when the nation is fighting against Covid-19 menace, the defence services must operate beyond the mandate and come to the support of our people and government in whatever way we can," Rawat told a news agency in an interview.

"In order to do so, we have to first ensure that we remain safe from COVID-19 because if our own sailors, soldiers and airmen get affected by this virus, how are we going to support our people. That is why we have issued very strict directions on social distancing, wearing of masks and ensuring that people who require to be in quarantine remain in quarantine," he added.

He said that the Director General Armed Forces Medical Services (DGAFMS) is regularly issuing directions.

"The medical directions are being regularly issued by our Director General Armed Forces Medical Services (DGAFMS) to ensure good health of our soldiers and airmen under these difficult times."

There are 25 Indian Navy personnel and eight Army personnel including two doctors and one nursing who have so far tested positive for COVID-19. The reported cases are symptomatic and were traced to one sailor who tested positive on April 7, according to reports. Twenty sailors are from INS Angre, a shore establishment in Mumbai.

The navy men have been admitted in naval hospital INHS Asvini in Mumbai’s Colaba after testing positive for the novel coronavirus.

The CDS said all the directions from the PMO are percolating down from rank and file and that strict discipline and patience is vital during these times.

"We are attending meetings organised by the Cabinet Secretary and we are attending meetings of the Ministry of Health. Whatever directions are coming, are percolating down to the rank and file and we are ensuring that these reach in the right time and right manner. This is very important for us to maintain strict discipline and patience," he said.

He said that armed forces personnel have downloaded the Aarogya Setu app and if anyone contracts the disease, health authorities can pick up the case and ensure that the spread does not happen.

With COVID-19 cases spreading at a fast rate across in India, the Army has said all its personnel will be classified as ‘green’ (who have completed 14 days of quarantine), ‘yellow’ (those who need to undergo 14 days quarantine) and lastly, ‘red’ (who are symptomatic and require isolation and further treatment in COVID hospitals).

On the nationwide lockdown, he says that it is not the time to be impatient.

"We do know when the country is under lockdown and people are told to stay indoors, they tend to become impatient. This is not the time to be impatient. Patience is very important to ensure that we remain disciplined. Maintaining discipline in armed forces is not very difficult as we are accustomed to be in discipline but to maintain patience is the need of the hour," he said.

Also Read: Here Is The List Of Countries With More COVID-19 Cases

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