Navy sources on Saturday said that most of Indian Navy’s 25 personnel, who have been tested positive for Covid-19 in Mumbai, are asymptomatic and have been traced to a single sailor who tested positive on April 7. 20 of these sailors are from INS Angre, a shore establishment in Mumbai. All sailors are reported to be in their 20s except for one who is 47 years old and is the oldest of the lot.
The infected navy men have been admitted to naval hospital INHS Asvini in Mumbai’s Colaba, two navy officials informed on the condition of anonymity.
All these sailors reside at the same accommodation block at INS Angre. All primary contacts of the naval personnel (though asymptomatic) have been tested for coronavirus while the entire inliving block has been put under quarantine and classified as a containment zone. INS Angre too is under lockdown.
There are no cases of infection onboard ships and submarines.
While this is the first reported case of Covid-19 in the Indian Navy, the Indian Army has so far reported eight positive virus cases.
“We have only eight positive cases in the entire Indian Army. Of the eight, two are doctors and one nursing assistant. Four are responding well to the treatment,” Army Chief General M.M Naravane said on Friday.
The Army personnel who have not come in contact with any Covid-19 positive person are being moved back to units.
“Our personnel who have not come in contact with any infected person are being moved back to units. We have already catered for two special trains — from Bengaluru to Jammu and the other from Bengaluru to Guwahati,” he added.
As the US Navy is struggling with increasing Covid-19 cases, Indian Navy chief Admiral Karambir Singh had stressed that it is vital to ensure that operational assets such as warships and submarines remain free of the virus and the navy is combat ready at all times.
In a 15-minute-long video message to naval personnel on April 9, the Indian Navy chief had told his men that while they should hope for the best, the navy should plan for the worst.
“We need to be ready for the worst-case scenario and to my mind, it will be a long battle,” the navy chief had said.
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