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Refuting the claims that a medical ward had been set up to stage a photo op for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to a military hospital in Ladakh, the Indian army said that the allegations were "malicious and unsubstantiated".
The army clarified that the medical ward was an audio-video training room that had been converted as part of the COVID-19 protocol long before PM Modi's visit
"It is unfortunate that aspersions are being cast on how our brave Armed Forces are treated. The armed forces give the best possible treatment to their personnel," the army said in a statement.
On July 3, Prime Minister Modi paid an unannounced visit to Ladakh to address the soldiers following the Indo-China clash in the Galwan valley. During his visit, the PM also met soldiers at the hospital who were injured during the clash.
However, the photographs of PM Modi's visit released by the BJP triggered a controversy online as several social media users said that the facility didn't look like a hospital as there were no medicine cabinets, intravenous fluid stands, and other medical equipment. Some even spotted a projector hanging from the ceiling as PM Modi posed next to the soldiers on tidy beds with wheels in a sparkling clean room.
To paraphrase a certain 'journalist' -— Doctor Roshan R 🌍 (@pythoroshan) July 4, 2020
Not in living memory have I ever seen a hospital ward filled with patients that had a projector & screen at the end.
Not in living memory have I seen a ward with zero medical equipment available at any angle. pic.twitter.com/dUFfOFvIB6
Dismissing the claims, the Army issued a statement on Saturday saying that the facility is part of the Crisis Expansion capacity of 100 beds and is very much part of the General Hospital complex.
"Hence, this hall which otherwise was normally used as a Training Audio Video Hall was converted into a ward ever since the hospital was also designated as a COVID-19 treatment hospital. Injured braves have been kept there since their arrival from Galwan to ensure quarantine from COVID areas. The Chief of Army Staff General M M Naravane and the Army Commander have also visited the injured braves in the same location," the Indian Army said in a statement.
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