New Delhi [India], April 10 (ANI): Air India Chairman and Managing Director, Rajiv Bansal on Thursday acknowledged his colleagues for their selfless contribution towards serving the cause of India and humanity at large during the global coronavirus pandemic.
"It gives me great pride to acknowledge your selfless contribution towards serving the cause of India and humanity at large during this global pandemic. Each and everyone of you have put in your mite - braving the dark clouds of the Corona Virus to breathe in new life and hope to overcome this gigantic challenge before us," Bansal said in a letter addressed to his colleagues.
With an increase of 540 positive COVID-19 cases reported in the last 24 hours, India's tally of coronavirus cases has risen to 5,734, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Thursday.
Pointing out that several rescue flights were operated by the airlines ever since the pandemic broke out, he said: "Air India had spread its wings to stand by the nation in its hour of crisis, ever since we took off to evacuate Indians stranded at Wuhan, the epicentre of this dreaded disease on January 31, 2020."
He said that despite constraints they had mobilised all available resources to operate 18 charter flights ferrying German, French, Irish and Canadian nationals stranded in India as requested by the embassies while adding that these initiatives were the least "we could do for humanity facing one of its worst crisis ever."
Bansal assured all AI members that the organisation stand with them in these trying times.
"We are leaving no stone unturned to ensure you get all the essential armoury to fight this war. Our dedicated medical services team members are available round the clock for any consultation, advice or emergency. The safety and health of our employees are as important to us as our passengers. We are doing everything possible to minimise risk factors," he said.
The Air India Chairman highlighted that it is due to these precautionary measures that so far, only one of the crew members amongst so many, who have been flying charter flights all over the world, has tested COVID positive. "I am relieved to inform you that she has also been discharged after full recovery under the watchful eyes of our medical department," he said.
As part of our Government's Mission Lifeline UDAN scheme, Air India and Alliance Air have over the last two weeks operated over 100 charter flights to ferry medical equipment and other items essential to fight back and contain the spread of the pandemic. Cargo flights between Delhi and Shanghai and to Hong Kong transporting vital medical cargo are also being operated.
"Let us reaffirm our pledge to contain the scale of this pandemic, remaining committed to our service towards our nation and humanity while taking every care of ourselves and our family. Before concluding, I earnestly urge all of you to stay strong and calm, refraining from rumours or hearsay to tide over the crisis. I am certain that together, we shall overcome...," he said. (ANI)