Covid-19 Crisis: Operation Help India

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New Delhi, May 07 (ANI): A patient with a breathing problem receives oxygen support (Funded by PMCares) amidst the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), inside the Medicine Ward of Safdarjung Hospital, in New Delhi on Friday. (ANI Photo/Rahul Singh)

From Houston to California, Indian groups pitch in with ventilators, oxygen concentrators and money

Indo-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston sends aid; Gandhian Foundation receives fund, and Indiaspora raises $ 1million for support

Our Bureau
New York

The Indo-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston is proud has worked with the US India Chamber of Commerce of Dallas Fort Worth through the USICOC Foundation and have just shipped another 32 portable ventilators (for a total of over 50 ventilators shipped) to aid in India’s COVID19 pandemic relief efforts on Monday which reached India on Wednesday, according to a statement.   

This second shipment of 32 ventilators are headed to government and NGO hospitals in 7 states across India as well as to the Indian Red Cross.

Jagdip Ahluwalia, Executive/Founding Director of the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston (IACCGH)who is leading efforts on behalf of Houston community in coordination with the USICOC Foundation credited many community organizations and individual business owners for these efforts and thanked IACCGH member United Airlines for transporting the ventilators from the USA to Delhi and Mumbai as part of their larger giving campaign.

IACCGH President Tarush Anand said that in addition to dozens of private donors, the nearly two dozen organizations have supported these efforts include: Sri Meenakshi Temple Society, Ismaili Jamatkhana in Houston, Dallas Indian Lions Club, Karya Siddhi Hanuman Temple of Frisco, Dawoodi Bohra Community, IT Serve Alliance, Ekta Mandir- DFW Hindu Temple, Ryan LLC., Gupta-Agarwal Foundation, BITOSA, West Texas Indian American Doctors, Austin Indian Community, USICOC Foundation, IACCGH, IIT Alumni Association of North Texas, India Association of North Texas, Gujarati Samaj of Dallas, Global Hindu Heritage Foundation, among others.

IACCGH member AbeezerTyebji, a Houston-based technology entrepreneur and a representative of the Dawoodi Bohra Community said, “Islam teaches us to aid all humanity, and as such to help India in this time of need is both a matter of faith as it is one of kinship for the DawoodiBohras.”

Ahluwalia also acknowledged the contributions made by the logistics and cargo teams at Perimeter Global Logistics, United Airlines and Southwest Airlines who are helping to carry the cargo at no cost.  

Neel Gonuguntla, President of the US India Chamber of Commerce in Dallas who is helping to lead the efforts said, “This collective community effort is the result of hundreds of helping hearts.”

The President of the IT Serve Alliance, partnered with the USICOC Foundation and donated over $100,000 to sending ventilators to India said, ” We want India to know that the ITSERVE Alliance community has your back to provide the help in any way we can,” said Raghu Chittimala, President, IT Serve Alliance.

The US India Chamber of Commerce DFW and the Indo American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston, which normally facilitate trade between the two countries, came together to unite the entire Texas Indian-American diaspora in this important effort through the USICOC Foundation.   The first shipment of 20 ventilators were shipped out last week and reached the Indian Red Cross last Friday, April 30, 2021 in addition to the 32 that reached India today.  The USICOC Foundation expects to send a third shipment of another 25 ventilators in the next few days in addition to several hundred oxygen concentrators.

In California, Indiaspora, a nonprofit community of global Indian diaspora leaders, announced they raised $1 million toward COVID-19 relief efforts within the last 48 hours, and will aim to double the impact of their donations by offering to match funds May 1 during the virtual event, “Help India Breathe,” reports ANI.

“We are proud of our community’s response. The outpouring of support from the Indian diaspora has been immediate and overwhelming,” said Sanjeev Joshipura, executive director of Indiaspora. “We hope Saturday’s event will continue to raise awareness and provide another opportunity for all of us to give. This has the potential to serve as a launch pad for additional and much-needed help for relief efforts in India.”

On May 3, Indiaspora launched its ‘ChaloGive for India’ Covid relief initiative.

The $1 million will address three major areas of COVID-19 relief on the ground: the creation of urgently needed COVID care centers and makeshift hospitals through the nonprofit WISH Foundation, direct cash transfer to families who have lost a primary earning member through the nonprofit giving platform GiveIndia, and food relief and livelihood assistance for migrant workers and other underserved populations through nonprofits Goonj and Jan Sahas.

In Nevada, longtime community and political activist, Dr.Prabhu Rachakonda (Former President of Indian American Forum for Political Education), has donated $ 15,000 towards Gandhian Foundation to help towards supply of Oxygen Concentrators to India. Dr. Rachakonda of Las Vegas, Nevada — one of the most influential Indian Americans in the state and country, and for decades the family physician, friend and confidante of former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) is also taking a high-level delegation to meet with Vice President Kamala Harris to help release/expedite the raw materials needed for vaccine in India. Dr.Prabhu had earlier played a very important role in helping India with the US-India Civil Nuclear deal by arranging for a meeting between the then Indian Ambassador and Senator Reid who was the then senate majority leader. The Indian American community is proud of the services of leaders like Dr.Prabhu.

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