Operation Samudra Setu: Navy ships to bring back Indian nationals from Iran

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The ships of the Indian Navy will bring back Indian nationals stranded in Iran as part of the country’s Samudra Setu initiative. The repatriation of Indians from Iran’s Bandar Abbas to Porbandar in Gujarat will begin on Monday.

The Indian embassy in Iran is preparing a list of citizens who will to be evacuated and will facilitate their embarkation after requisite medical screening, a state from the Navy said.

The Indians will be brought back onboard INS Shardul.

The Navy said that the ship has been specially provisioned for the evacuation operation and the staff onboard will follow social distancing norms. Additional medical staff, doctors, hygienists, nutritionists, medical stores, rations, personal protective equipment, face-masks and lifesaving gear is lso present on the ship, the Navy said.

Some innovative products developed by the Indian Navy to help during the ongoing Covid-19 crisis is also being carried onboard, it further said.

The evacuated Indian nationals will be handed over to the state authorities when they reach India, the Navy said.

Indian Naval ships Jalashwa and Magar have already evacuated 2,874 personnel from Maldives and Sri Lanka to ports of Kochi and Tuticorin as part of “Operation Samudra Setu”.

INS Jalashwa repatriated 700 Indian nationals stranded in Maldives and arrived in Tuticorin on Sunday.

The bulk of the repatriated persons, 686, hailed from Tamil Nadu while the others belonged to Karnataka, Kerala and Puducherry, Tuticorin port officials said.

The ship left Port of Male on June 5 and came back to India on Sunday.

Operation Samudra Setu is part of the Centre’s initiative to repatriate Indians stranded in foreign countries due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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