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Airlines Deliver Urgent Medical Supplies To India

by Charlotte Barcham

Qatar Airways and Virgin Atlantic have delivered urgent medical supplies to India to support with the surge of coronavirus cases.

Help from the Middle East

India’s health system is on the brink of collapse as covid cases soar past 20 million with record numbers of new deaths every day.

Earlier this week, Qatar Airways sent three cargo planes to the cities of Bengaluru, Mumbai and New Delhi carrying approximately 300 tonnes of medical supplies from around the world. This included PPE equipment, oxygen canisters and other essential medical items, as well as donations by individuals and companies around the world.

A Qatar Airways cargo flight ready to depart to India

Three Boeing 777 freighters delivered medical supplies to India on Monday © Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, said: “Having seen with great sorrow the impact this further wave of COVID-19 infections has had on people in India, we knew we had to be part of the global effort to support the valiant health care workers in the country.”

Europe’s Support to India

Countries all across Europe including Russia, France and the UK have also put together care packages delivered by cargo flights to help with the crisis. Last week Virgin Atlantic departed from London Heathrow to deliver over 200 boxes of oxygen concentrators to Delhi, India.

A cargo flight getting prepared to leave London Heathrow Airport

A cargo flight getting prepared to leave London Heathrow Airport © Heathrow Media Centre

Following the success of this flight, the airline has subsequently offered support to the Indian Government on its flights to India this week, opening up space to carry further oxygen concentrators.

Jas Singh, Senior First Officer at Virgin Atlantic said: “Having seen the escalating situation in India, I wanted to do everything within my power to support the cause. I was scheduled to fly out this Saturday and so got in touch with Khalsa Aid to see if we could carry the oxygen concentrators they had been crowd sourcing to purchase. It has been awe inspiring to see the generosity of my colleagues, friends and family.”

The pandemic has already put the aviation industry in chaos but India’s rapidly deteriorating crisis adds a new uncertainty to travellers amid international travel restrictions easing. How has this made you feel about international travel? Let us know below. 

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