Bengaluru: (COVID-19 news) Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), a Navratna PSU under the Ministry of Defence has successfully completed the manufacturing of 30,000 ICU Ventilators in a record time to help GoI in its efforts in combating the COVID-19 pandemic, the Defence PSU announced in a press conference in Bengaluru on Friday. Important thing is that the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare had placed this order for 30,000 ICU ventilators at the end of April only to meet the healthcare infrastructure requirements of the nation, seeing the rise in COVID cases. Within the span of 140 days, BEL has executed this miracle.
Imagine a country that did not ever make PPE kits, has now become so tech-equipped that it manufactured 30,000 ICU ventilators in less than 140 days' time.
BEL has manufactured the ICU Ventilator, Model CV 200, based on licensing agreement with M/s Skanray Technologies Private Ltd, Mysuru, and design support from DRDO. The indigenization efforts of DRDO, BEL and Skanray in addressing the non-availability of critical components like highly complex medical grade miniature proportional valves, on/off solenoid valves, oxygen sensors and flow sensors was certainly a game-changer as India can now boast of a capable and mature medical electronics ecosystem. After receiving the order, based on its Agile Production System Capability, within two weeks BEL established the manufacturing line to produce 500 to 1,000 Ventilators per day.
Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar (IAS) congratulated BEL on this feat. "Today BEL produced 30000th ventilator. New production line, indigenised components & time-bound production. A great example of #AtmaNirbharBharat. Well done!" he tweeted.
"BEL was able to achieve this significant milestone because of the support of the DRDO labs which worked closely with BEL to provide the design and support from the various Government agencies. BEL needed to think out of the box to overcome many of the challenges, especially with regard to critical components, many of which were indigenised by DRDO labs and manufactured by Indian aerospace and defence companies" said humble M V Gowtama, CMD, BEL.
Manufacturing of these ventilators was undertaken during a severe lockdown period and BEL received immense support from various Government agencies to resolve the supply chain disruptions. As manufacturing of these Ventilators was centred at the Bangalore Unit of BEL, the Karnataka Government took extra initiatives by earmarking a nodal IAS officer for BEL to liaison with, to resolve various lockdown related issues. "BEL would like to make special mention of the support rendered by scores of Indian industries ranging from MSMEs to large business houses in supporting BEL towards manufacturing of 30,000 ventilators in a short span of time," said Gowtama.
"The manufacture of 30,000 ventilators in 4.5 months by BEL is not just a national but an international record. He commended the good leadership of Mr M V Gowtama, CMD, BEL, who led from the front" said Dr S Venugopal, Director, Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE). Addressing the press conference Dr Upendra Kumar Singh, Director, CAIR said "this was a very good example of the excellent partnership among public sector, private sector and government agencies, especially during the time of crisis".
"The valuable feedback received from the committee of expert doctors and hospitals pan India helped BEL to quickly upgrade the Ventilator with additional modes of operation through software to address Indian COVID patient needs," BEL said in a press statement issued later. "Seamless coordination between the Central and State government authorities helped BEL in undertaking the installation and commissioning work expeditiously with the help of reputed private partners" it added.
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