Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba met Navy officer Abhilash Tomy on Thursday in Delhi, after a surgery to fix his back injury. Admiral Lanba spent some time in Commander Tomy's hospital room and wished him speedy recovery.
The two-hour surgery was carried out by Air Commodore MS Sridhar, the senior most neuro-surgeon of Indian Armed Forces. Commander Tomy had suffered back injury while competing in the Golden Globe Race, one of the most challenging endurance races on the planet. He had sailed into hurricane winds in the most remote and uncharted part of the Indian Ocean last month.
The naval officer was rescued in an international effort after his boat was seriously damaged in the Indian Ocean. He was brought back to India on October 7, by Indian Navy frigate INS Satpura from Ile Amsterdam, a small island in the Indian Ocean, where he had been taken after he was rescued from the rough seas by French fisheries patrol vessel FPV Osiris last month. He was under observation at a hospital on the island.
Sailing more than 5,000 km south of Kanyakumari, Commander Tomy's boat had been hammered by 14-metre-high waves with wind speeds touching 150 Km per hour. He had lost the main mast of the boat and hit his back on the deck during the storm.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Mann Ki Baat praised the Kirti Chakra awardee for his courage and will-power. PM Modi said, the Navy officer is an "inspiration for the youth" of the nation.
On September 27, PM Modi had spoken with Commander Tomy and enquired about his health. "He told me of his determination to repeat such a feat again. His resolve even after surviving such an ordeal is an inspiration for youth. I pray for his good health, courage, valour, will power, strength and determination to win," said PM Modi in his radio address to the nation.