Tatsat Chronicle Magazine

Home Minister Flags Off Boat Ambulance to Serve Inaccessible Areas of Sunderbans

May 6, 2022
A boat ambulance in Swabhimaan Anchal, Malkangiri, Odisha, to address medical exigencies of inhabitants living in remote locations. Photo credit: BSF

Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who is on a two-day visit to West Bengal, flagged off a boat ambulance and six floating border outposts at Hingalganj in North 24 Parganas district on May 5.

Addressing Border Security Force (BSF) personnel at the event, Shah said, the newly launched border outposts would help stop infiltration and smuggling.

The number of floating border outposts has been raised for better surveillance in the inaccessible areas of Sunderbans. The boat ambulance will provide medical assistance to people in the area.

In January, the BSF launched a boat ambulance service for the people of the erstwhile “cut-off” area in Malkangiri in Odisha. The 24X7 ambulance service facilitates emergency medical service to around 30,000 people in the area.

Deputy Inspector-General Sanjay Singh, who launched the service in Odisha, in an interview said, “Our officers will arrange the ambulance to shift patients to the nearby hospital once they reach the mainland. During a visit to the area, we felt the need of introducing an ambulance service here.”

The boat ambulance is equipped with medicines, oxygen cylinders and para-medical staff.

The natives face difficulties in taking patients to the district headquarter. They are unable to access normal ambulance services due to lack of road connectivity. Sometimes people take the help of country-made boats and, in many cases, the patient fails to survive because of delay while on way to the hospital.