India provides assistance to Mauritius to contain oil spill

New Delhi (NVI): India has dispatched over 30 tonnes of technical equipment and material on board an IAF Aircraft to Mauritius to deal with an oil spill near the country’s south-east coast after a Japanese ship ran aground on a coral reef.

The government of Mauritius declared a “state of environmental emergency” late Friday as coastal areas including an island nature reserve face an ecological disaster.

Mauritius had requested for assistance from India in dealing with the environmental crisis due to the oil spill on its south-east coast and help in containment and salvage operations.

The specialized equipment sent by India, consisting of Ocean Booms, River Booms, Disc Skimmers, Heli Skimmers, Power packs, Blowers, Salvage barge and Oil absorbent Graphene pads and other accessories, is specifically designed to contain the oil slick, skim oil from water, and assist in clean up and salvage operations, an official release stated.

A 10-member Technical Response Team, consisting of Indian Coast Guard (ICG) personnel specially trained for dealing with oil spill containment measures, has also been deployed to Mauritius to extend necessary technical and operational assistance at the site, it said.

“India’s assistance is in line with its policy to extend humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to its neighbours in the Indian Ocean region, guided by the Prime Minister’s vision of SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region). The urgent assistance reflects the close bonds of friendship between India and Mauritius and India’s abiding commitment to assist the people of Mauritius in need,” the statement read.

The Indian assistance follows recent support provided by India to Mauritius in its fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, including supply of essential medicines, a special consignment of Ayurvedic medicines as well as a medical assistance team sent as part of Mission ‘Sagar’, it added.