The Indian Air Force (IAF) has stepped up its efforts to meet all the emerging requirements during the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic. The IAF continues to airlift essential supplies of medicine and ration along with medical personnel within the country, to equip the state governments and supporting agencies to combat the contagion effectively. The IAF has transported approximately 600 tonnes of medical equipment and other essential supplies till date since the beginning of the COVID-19 lockdown.
On Saturday, the IAF's transport aircraft landed at the Lengpui airport in Aizawl with 22 tonnes of medical supplies for combating COVID-19, the ministry said in a statement.
The items were airlifted for the governments of Mizoram and Meghalaya, it added.
India has been under lockdown since March 25 to curb the spread of coronavirus, which has infected more than 29,000 people and has claimed the lives of 934 people in the country till now.
All commercial passenger flights have been suspended for the lockdown period. However, cargo flights, medical evacuation flights, and special flights permitted by the aviation regulator DGCA are allowed to operate.
The ministry said, "Till date, the IAF has transported approximately 600 tonnes of medical equipment and support material."
A 15-member rapid response team of the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) was sent to Kuwait on April 11 in response to the request from Kuwait to the Indian government.
On completion of the task, the team was airlifted back from Kuwait in a C-130 aircraft of the IAF on April 25, the ministry said.
"During the return, a six-year-old girl, suffering from cancer and requiring immediate emergency surgery, was also evacuated along with her father," it said.