Representational image of Indian Army personnel in Kashmir | ANI
Representational image of Indian Army personnel in Kashmir | ANI
Text Size:

New Delhi: The Indian armed forces have revised the quarantine policy for members of the Army, the Navy and the Air Force amid their increased deployment in light of India-China tensions at Ladakh.

Soldiers who return from leave or temporary duties, or report for a new posting, will now be exempt from the mandatory 14-day quarantine unless a clear Covid-19 infection risk has been established.

According to the revised guidelines issued by the Directorate General of Armed Forces Medical Services Monday, exemption from quarantine may be considered if the personnel are asymptomatic and have not come into contact with a confirmed or suspected Covid-19 patient in the 14 days preceding their arrival at their base.

The guidelines cover all three branches of the military, the Army, the Navy and the Air Force. They were issued exactly a week after the clash between India and China at Galwan Valley in Ladakh that killed 20 Indian soldiers. It was reported Tuesday that the two sides have resolved to avoid a repeat of the Galwan Valley violence and decided to pursue step-wise de-escalation in Ladakh.

So far, members of three branches have been mandated to serve a 14-day quarantine following their return from leave and temporary duties, and while reporting for a new posting. 

Speaking to ThePrint, a senior defence officer said, in the current scenario, there is always a requirement of having the maximum number of soldiers available for operational duties.  

“On returning from leaves or other duties, the troops are in quarantine for 14 days. So, even though they are physically present, they are not available for operational requirements,” the officer added. 

The revised policy was drafted on the recommendations of a board of officers after they reviewed the Covid-19 policies in place at a meeting. The recommendations of the board, sources said, were based on how the disease has evolved, evidence from global research, and the central government’s response to the pandemic.


Also Read: Covid blurs distinction between war and peace as soldiers worldwide fight the third army


Other conditions for exemption

The guidelines also suggest other conditions for exemption from quarantine: For example, if personnel have travelled from one station of duty to another without any halt in between, and used service transport or their own vehicle for the journey. 

They can also avail of the exemption if they sign a self-declaration certificate validated by the commanding officer of their units.

The revised policy further says that testing will not be required for individuals before, during or after quarantine unless they exhibit symptoms. They state that temporary duties of less than seven days should be avoided unless absolutely urgent. Families or dependents of serving personnel will be quarantined on the basis of the policy in a given state, they add. 

Another such concession was extended earlier this month to facilitate quick travel of the forces, in the days before the Galwan Valley clash. The Department of Military Affairs (DMA) allowed personnel stranded at various locations because of the limited transport available during the Covid-19 lockdown a one-time relaxation to use private airlines to get back to their units. The relaxation will be available for a month, until 10 July.


Also Read: Tough to ‘weaponise’ coronavirus, but can’t rule out attacks: Armed Forces Medical Chief


 

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it

India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.

But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.

ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.

Support Our Journalism

VIEW COMMENTS

8 COMMENTS

  1. What is rules for defence person posting in trivendram .Kindly clearly.
    Owner not giving any personal house for corantine. Kindly help I posted to trivendram.
    Pls help and reply pls

  2. What is rules for defence person posting in trivendram .Kindly clearly.
    Owner not giving any personal house for corantine. Kindly help I posted to trivendram.
    Pls help and reply

  3. What India should has done is put a millions Indian on this border dispute to drive the evil Chinese PLA out! What will evil china do to these millions unarmed poor people?feed them or corrupted them?

  4. Using the words like killed is demeaning and despite that it is being used blatantly in this particular news agency against Indian soldiers.

Comments are closed.