Indian Army Lock Down Regimental Center in Occupied Kashmir over Corona Virus spread


(Indian Media – Srinagar): Indian Army in Occupied Kashmir shut down Regimental Centre of over 800 strength amid fear of spread of Corona Virus. Earlier Indian Media (NDTV) reported on 18th March2020 that: ‘an Indian army soldier was on causal leave between 25 February 2020 – 1st March 2020, in Indian held Kashmir. He came back from leave and joined the unit. It was reported that soldier’s father returned from Iran on 27th February 2020 in Ladakh.

Infected with Corona virus the Indian Army Soldier joined his Regimental Center of approx. 800 people. Entry and Exit to the Garrison in Leh is restricted now. Moreover, all the flights passengers travelling from Leh to Srinagar capital of held Kashmir are put into Quarantine now.

The soldier is a resident of Chuchot village in Leh. His father had tested positive for coronavirus on March 6 and was isolated at the Sonam Nurboo Memorial (SNM) hospital in Leh, following his return from a pilgrimage in Iran on February 27. That man was quarantined at the Ladakh Heart Foundation two days later.

A 34-year-old soldier, whose father had travelled to Iran, has been infected by the coronavirus, making him the first case of the disease in the army. His father had travelled on a pilgrimage in Iran last month and had tested positive for the coronavirus a few days after his return.

The army has placed the Ladakh Scouts Regimental Centre in Leh where the soldier is posted under lockdown. The soldier is a resident of Chuchot village in Leh. After his father returned from a pilgrimage in Iran on February 27, he was quarantined at the Ladakh Heart Foundation in Leh two days later. His father had tested positive for coronavirus on March 6 and was isolated at the Sonam Norboo Memorial Hospital in Leh.

Iran is one of the countries worst affected by the coronavirus outbreak and 255 Indians are affected by the virus. The soldier had rejoined his work place from leave, but was helping his family during the quarantine period and was staying at Chuchot village.

The soldier was also quarantined on March 7 and tested positive for the virus on March 16. He was isolated at the SNM hospital. His wife, two children and sister have also been quarantined at the SNM heart foundation. Officials also said that the Ladakh Scouts Regimental Centre has been placed on a lockdown. The soldiers who came in contact with that soldier even they have been quarantined.

Army Chief General M M Naravane visited the Jaisalmer military station from March 17 to 18 and reviewed the army wellness centre established there in view of the coronavirus outbreak. The total number of people quarantined here has risen to 484.

Due to the pandemic, the army had postponed its courses meant for career progression that were starting from the coming Monday. Courses that are in progress are continuing with precaution. The army also cancelled non-essential training, conferences and movement in view of the outbreak. The National Defence College, which imparts training in national and international security related fields to the selected senior defence, civil services officers and officers from friendly foreign countries, has also been closed until March 31. The army had to postpone all its recruitment rallies by one month. It had also issued an advisory to all its formations to avoid “non-essential” mass gatherings such as festivals and visits to crowded areas like movie halls and shopping malls.

The navy’s Eastern Command has setup a quarantine camp at INS Vishwakarma in Visakhapatnam for Indian nationals being evacuated from coronavirus affected countries. “As a precautionary measure, the evacuated persons are to be kept under quarantine for a period of fourteen days. ENC is proactively coordinating with the Health Officials from State and District Administration to ensure adequate preventive care is provided to all evacuated personnel and to prevent the spread of the virus,” the navy said.

The quarantine camp is fully equipped to accommodate nearly 200 personnel. The evacuated personnel in the camp will be closely monitored to ensure social distancing and under medical supervision of a team of naval personnel and medical professionals of ENC.

The Indian Air Force had to postpone its scheduled test for airmen recruitment, which was planned to be held in 86 cities from March 19 to 23. It has been tentatively postponed till the last week of April. Coronavirus cases in India have risen to around 150, while three people have lost their lives due to it.