Letter to the Editor | 03 June 2020
COVID-19 lockdown – A Big Thank You!!
I was stranded with my family in India for nearly 3 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. An Air Seychelles repatriation flight came to pick around 30 plus Seychellois who were stranded in and around Chennai for the past few months along with our fellow Seychellois patients who had completed their treatment from MIOT Hospital, Chennai and also some patients from Colombo, Sri Lanka from the deserted Chennai International Airport. Myself and family were among them.
The process was initiated by my uncle, Siva Pillay, who formed a whatsapp group including our Honorable Seychelles high commissioner in India, Selby Pillay and his team based in New Delhi and the honorary consul of Seychelles in Chennai, Sesha Sai.
The whole process was co-ordinated very well between the high commissioner, the honorary consul and us from the beginning. I personally was amazed and overwhelmed to see how our Excellency Selby Pillay and his team as well as Honorary Consul Sai involved themselves. Hats off to them!!
A long awaited journey was very exciting with all the norms to be strictly followed as per the Public Health Authority for our own safety as well as for the safety of our fellow citizens. I could see how the passengers expressed their joy, clapping their hands while the plane landed at the Chennai Airport when it came to pick us up and also when the wheels touched the Seychelles International Airport last Saturday night at around 10pm from where we were taken straight to our quarantine centre and been looked after very well here.
Myself and family and on behalf of all who were able to come back home by this special flight would like to say first of all a Big Thank U to the government of Seychelles, the government of India, our national airline Air Seychelles, SCAA (Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority), the department of health and the Health Care Agency, especially our Public Health Commisioner Dr Jude Gedeon and CEO Health Care Agency Dr Danny Louange.
Also many thanks to Siva Pillay for leading and co-ordinating our team so meticulously, Mr Sivarajan for his IT input throughout the entire process and to whoever assisted in one way or another!!
Dr Murthy Pillay