Indian warship with 100 tons of oxygen reaches Lanka amid rapid increase in COVID-19 cases
Indian warship Shakti carrying 100 tons of liquid medical oxygen reached Sri Lanka on Sunday to help the island nation fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
The country’s Minister of Ports, Rohitha Abeygunawardena, was at the port here to receive the cargo and hailed India’s help in curbing the coronavirus pandemic.
The deployment of the Indian warship for the delivery of oxygen was in response to a personal request for assistance from Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for an urgent supply of liquid medical oxygen (OMT), the Indian High Commission said here.
“The camaraderie and coordination between the navies and various other stakeholders in India and Sri Lanka was on display as the Sri Lankan Navy ship Shakthi with 40 tons of LMO on board also began its journey from Chennai to Colombo. about the same time as INS Shakti.
“It was a rare case where two Shakti ships started their journey from two different ports in India to the same destination almost at the same time for a common purpose,” he said.
India’s assistance to Sri Lanka during the pandemic has been varied and needs-based. Almost 26 tons of essential medical supplies were donated in April-May 2020. A currency swap of $ 400 million was provided in July 2020.
The first batch of vaccine, which was donated by India in January 2021, allowed Sri Lanka to roll out its immunization program ahead of schedule, the Indian High Commission said.
Sri Lanka is currently experiencing a rapid increase in infections.
The death toll topped 7,000 with nearly 200 deaths, health officials said on Sunday.
There has been a 30% increase in oxygen demand to cope with the rapidly increasing number of new patients, officials said.
(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)