An empty street in Kashmir amid the nationwide lockdown due to coronavirus
Over apprehensions that the coronavirus pandemic has entered a sensitive phase, the Indian Army across the Union Territories of Jammu Kashmir and Ladakh put in place a number of surveillance and control measures by initiating a number of innovative awareness programmes as part of its efforts to fight COVID-19.
While advisories by medical specialists on identification of symptoms and precautions against the pandemic have been issued in text and audio visual formats, the army personnel are being motivated to share the information with their families, friends and civil population in the area of their deployment, an army spokesperson here said.
Pointing out that at the unit level a number of measures have been taken by all ranks to prevent spread of epidemic among its personnel so that they are they are available to do their primary task and to support the people in fight against the virus, the spokesperson said troops returning from leave or out station duties directly report to the screening centre established at various transit camps. After the medical screening, they are being quarantined for 14 days in rooms established in the units, he added.
To avoid congestion in barracks, distance between the beds has been increased and in the dining halls, meals are served at different timings so as to avoid crowding. Social distancing is being maintained and adequate hand washing points are in place, he added.
A total of 17 helplines in the the two UTs of Ladakh & J&K for Awam have been established by the troops of Northern Command, the spokesperson said. The Mobile Vehicle Check Posts that are usually deployed for Counter Terrorist operations are innovatively educating the populace on COVID-19 by way of audio broadcasts through loudspeakers and hailers, he added.
While the aim of reinforcing the seriousness with regard to preventive measures against COVID-19 is being achieved, Army personnel are ensuring their own safety through series of precautions as laid down in protocol. Critical aspects such as ensuring Social Distancing, hand hygiene and use of face masks are spoken about, posters and banners are also being pasted at multiple places in in Urdu, Hindi & English.
Multiple advisories on social media including Audio Video Content has been posted using the Twitter handle of Northern Command & the same can be accessed by the awam. The spokesperson reiterated that the firm commitment of Northern Command in taking this fight forward is very well expressed in the newly coined mission “CORONA MUKT AWAM”.
Pointing out that the Northern Command stands shoulder to shoulder with the Civil Administration of the UTs of J&K and Ladakh in these testing times, the spokesperson said that the Army as an organization are proactively taking all measures. Drills have been set in, which is the most important factor in containing the virus & to prevent any incident of corona virus.
Should there be a situation to extend facilities to the civil administration, medical personnel and units are building their capacities non medical personnel are being taught to actively contribute to the care of patients and effort is on to enhance equipment holdings. Strategy by the senior commanders is to pro actively initiate steps and not be able to aggressively act.
Army personnel are ruthlessly following the social vaccine of "I will neither get infected nor will I infect others". These will go a long way towards protecting the protectors against the pandemic in the UTs of J&K and Ladakh and keeping them ready to undertake the big fight if the need be.