May 12, 2021 6:58:56 pm
“Recognise the whole human race as one,” reads the motto on the shirts donned by scores of Khalsa Aid volunteers across the nation. The sikh community has made the news multiple times now for their tireless COVID-19 relief efforts, especially in distributing free oxygen concentrators to critical COVID-19 patients.
Their fight has breathed life into the countless afflicted, but the uphill struggle is not over yet. India clocks over 4+ lakh daily cases. The demand is only set to increase, and Khalsa Aid needs our help to keep their humanitarian efforts on.
‘Oxygen concentrators’ for a suffocating nation
The demand for oxygen is increasing multifold today. Let alone patients, even doctors’ kith and kin are struggling to get oxygen beds as infrastructure struggles to cope. But oxygen cylinders are not the only plausible solution. Many COVID-19 patients can also be supported by oxygen concentrators–devices that process atmospheric air, expel other gases, concentrate oxygen and supply it to the patient. They run on electricity, are far easier to transport and can potentially function 24×7.
“My father’s health was declining rapidly. The doctor asked us to arrange an oxygen cylinder. But where would we find one? The one we did asked for Rs 76,000 for one cylinder! It was only through Khalsa Aid that we found help while we still have time. My father got a new lease of life,” adds a COVID-19 patient’s son. His is just one among a sea of testimonies that hail the group’s humanitarian efforts—the thousands of times they have helped save a life.
Khalsa Aid receives multiple SOS calls every day, and has put a simple process in place: “Once we receive a call, we ask them to give their details. We then send a volunteer over and give them the oxygen concentrator. Once their use is over, we take back the concentrator, sanitise it properly and then re-pack it so it can be passed onto someone else. You can see our warehouse constantly working and packing these concentrators.”
What India needs and how you can help
However, these life-sustaining machines can cost anywhere from Rs 44,000 to Rs 85,000 each. Khalsa Aid has already procured and distributed over 900 oxygen concentrators in India. They have come in clutch time and again to save struggling patients by providing support. However, amid the mounting demand, Khalsa Aid aims to distribute at least 5,000 such concentrators across the country.
As the Sikh community and Khalsa Aid volunteers help the nation fight off this crisis, they also need our help. It will cost Rs 10 crore to procure 5,000 oxygen concentrators, and they need our support to raise this mammoth sum. You too can support their efforts on the frontline by donating and spreading the word about it.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.