Focus: GS-III Disaster Management

Why in news?

Operation Samudra Setu, which was launched in May 2020 as part of the national effort to repatriate Indian citizens from overseas during the COVID-19 pandemic has culminated after successfully.

The Success story of Operation Samudra Setu

  • The Samudra Setu operation has successfully brought almost 4,000 Indian Citizens back to their homeland by Sea.
  • Naval Ships Jalashwa (Landing Platform Dock), and Airavat, Shardul and Magar (Landing Ship Tanks) participated in this operation which lasted over 55 days and involved traversing more than 23,000 kilometres by sea.
  • The greatest challenge for the Indian Navy was to avoid any incident of outbreak of infection onboard the ships during the evacuation operation.
  • Rigorous measures were planned and medical/ safety protocols unique to the operating environment of ships were implemented to prevent cases of outbreak onboard.

Operation Samudra Setu

  • The Indian Navy has launched ‘Operation Samudra Setu’ as a part of national effort to repatriate Indian citizens from overseas.
  • This operation is being progressed in close coordination with Ministries of Defence, External Affairs, Home Affairs, Health and various other agencies of the Government of India and State governments.
  • INS Jalashwa and INS Magar are being operated as part of efforts to repatriate Indian nationals from foreign shores.
  • INS Jalashwa is the largest amphibious platform in the Navy.

Indian Naval Ship: INS Jalashwa

Formerly USS Trenton, the INS Jalashwa – along with six Sikorsky SH-3 Sea King Helicopters were procured by India from the U.S. in 2005.

Indian Naval Ship: INS Magar

INS Magar ship was Made in India and it is the lead ship of Magar-class of the Indian Navy.

Vande Bharat Mission

  • Vande Bharat Mission became the biggest evacuation exercise to bring back Indian citizens stranded abroad amidst the coronavirus-induced travel restrictions.
  • ‘Vande Bharat Mission’ will see 64 flights being operated to bring back around 15,000 Indian nationals stranded abroad.
  • Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express will operate 64 flights to bring back stranded Indians from 12 countries.
  • The mission has given priority to Indian citizens with “compelling reasons to return” – like those whose employment have been terminated, those whose visas have expired and not expected to be renewed under the present circumstances and those who have lost family members in recent times.
  • The entire cost of travel will be borne by the passengers under the mission.
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