Coronavirus India: In Delhi, the fighter jets will drop petals at hospitals across the city from 10:30 am. Some of the hospitals are Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital and Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital.


New Delhi, May 3:

A mega effort by the armed forces to felicitate healthcare workers and other corona warriors is underway across the country, complete with flypasts by fighter jets over state capitals, aerial flower shower and performances by military bands outside hospitals. In the evening, Navy ships docked at major ports, including Mumbai and Chennai, will be lit up. The “gesture of special gratitude” was announced on Friday by Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and the three service chiefs. The show of gratitude for health workers started in March with Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting people to clap from balconies. A week later, there was the show of solidarity with candle light.

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The gesture of thanks started with laying of flowers by the three service chiefs at the police memorial in Delhi this morning to honour police personnel deployed for enforcement of the nationwide lockdown.

In Delhi, Sukhoi-30 MKI, MiG-29 and Jaguars will conduct a flypast over Rajpath, orbit over Delhi and shower petals over the India Gate and Red Fort. Besides, C-130 transport aircraft followed a similar route.

A similar exercise was conducted over Srinagar’s Dal Lake, Chandigarh’s Sukhna Lake and Lucknow.

The Indian Air Force fighter jets from the Western Air Command will drop petals at hospitals across Delhi, including Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital and Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital.

In Mumbai, fighter jets did a flypast over the Marine Drive and dropped petals over the King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital and Kasturba Gandhi Hospital, among others.

“Our Armed Forces have always kept the nation safe. Even in times of disasters, they are out there helping people. Now, our Forces are, in a unique way, saying a big thank you to our frontline COVID-19 warriors for their endeavour towards making India COVID-19 free,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted on Friday.

The jets showering petals are likely to be seen much clearer against the sky as visibility has improved in most cities due to no industrial activities and less pollutants in the air during the lockdown.

Navy officials said the Western Naval Command will illuminate five ships from 7.30 pm to 11:59 pm off the Gateway of India in Mumbai, PTI reported. They will show banners like “India Salutes Corona Warriors” and will sound the siren of the ships and fire flares at 7:30 pm at anchorage.

Additionally, the Naval air stations at Goa will organise a human chain on the runway to honour “corona warriors”. The Eastern Naval Command will illuminate two ships at anchorage from 7.30 pm to midnight at Visakhapatnam coast.

The country reported the biggest single-day jump in the number of coronavirus cases with 2,644 people testing positive in the last 24 hours, taking the total to 39,980. Another 83 people died — also the highest – taking the number of fatalities to 1,301, data from the Union Health Ministry showed.