The Middle East companies helping aid with Covid relief to India

From donating profits to creating a supply chain of oxygen concentrators, these companies are helping the country and also urging others to follow suit

From left: Talabat has launched #IftarforIndia; A Jacky's Electronics worker packs oxygen concentrators in Hong Kong, for India. Courtesy Talabat; Jacky's Electronics
From left: Talabat has launched #IftarforIndia; A Jacky's Electronics worker packs oxygen concentrators in Hong Kong, for India. Courtesy Talabat; Jacky's Electronics

As India undergoes its second – and much deadlier – wave of coronavirus, a number of regional companies in the Middle East have stepped forward to lend a helping hand. Here’s a look at some initiatives that are currently happening that are all about helping the country, while calling for more support from other establishments.

Talabat

talabat has enforced strict safety measures during the pandemic.
Talabat's #IftarforIndia will take place on May 9. Courtesy Talabat

The food delivery giant has created #IftarForIndia, an initiative to help communities affected by the Covid-19 pandemic in India.

As part of the initiative, for every food order placed between 5pm to 8pm on Sunday, the organisation will donate the value of the meal to the World Food Programme which will go to helping India’s coronavirus relief efforts. It is part of Talabat’s #AlwaysThere campaign.

Tomaso Rodriguez, chief executive of Talabat, said that while the campaign was initially designed to support communities in the Mena region during Ramadan, it is “adaptable to different pressing needs.”

“When you look at the sheer volume of Covid cases in the last week in India, the situation is heartbreaking. In the Mena region, we have a large, thriving Indian population, especially in many of the markets we operate in," he said.

"We want our Indian community, our restaurant partners, our customers, our colleagues, and our riders to know that we are truly with them."

He has also called on other organisations to give what they can to help India.

Careem and Hala

Careem and Hala have teamed up to aid India's Covid relief effort. 
Careem and Hala have teamed up to aid India's Covid relief effort.

UAE companies Careem and Hala have joined forces to aid in India's Covid relief efforts. Starting Sunday, and continuing for the next two weeks, for every Careem or Hala ride and every Careem food order in the UAE, the companies will donate Dh1 to Unicef's efforts to bring oxygen and rapid PCR tests to people in need in India.

"There are incredibly strong ties between India and the UAE and as India faces a Covid crisis, people in our community want to help. Careem is trying to do its part by donating for every ride and every food order, leveraging our technology to support Unicef’s lifesaving efforts,” said Ibrahim Manna, Careem’s managing director of Markets.

Jacky’s Electronics

The scale of Covid-19 cases in India has led UAE electronics retailer, Jacky’s Electronics, to launch a direct-to-home delivery server of oxygen concentrators to India.

Owner Ashish Panjabi told The National that although this is a product that they don’t normally sell, when demand for it began increasing, they decided to mobilise because “people need them desperately”.

UAE residents can now put in online requests to gift oxygen concentrators to people in India with door-to-door delivery available through the company, which ships them from Hong Kong.

On Thursday, Panjabi expressed disappointment about India's Goods and Service (GST) tax on oxygen concentrator shipments, saying the company will be absorbing the GST amount for shipments.

Danube Home

The Danube Home showroom in Barsha. Courtesy Danube Home
The Danube Home showroom in Barsha. Courtesy Danube Home

The furniture company under Danube Group in Dubai, has announced that they will be donating 10 per cent of profits from its Dubai store sales in the month of May to Covid-19 relief efforts in India.

The initiative will be handled by the Danube Home Foundation, with the company primarily donating to oxygen provider agencies as well as NGOs around Mumbai, the city chairman Rizwan Sajan is from. Some institutions that have already been identified for the donation are Popular Front of India Maharashtra, Rotary India and Kalsekar Hospital.

“Given the severity of the devastating pandemic in India, it’s our responsibility to make efforts towards helping the needy and the sufferers across India,” said Adel Sajan, group managing director of Danube Group. “It is very much required for all organisations to come forward in every possible way to ensure that our citizens have seamless access to the healthcare services, oxygen and other necessary requirements which can save precious lives.”

Updated: May 12, 2021 11:02 AM

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