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Minneapolis St. Paul News, Weather, Traffic, Sports | Minneapolis, Minnesota | kare11.com

Minnesota non-profit lends helping hand to COVID relief efforts in India

A second wave of the virus is sweeping across the nation, with at least 300,000 new cases a day for the last 8 days, according to the World Health Organization.

MINNESOTA, USA — The COVID-19 outbreak in India is one of the worst in the world, and only 2% of the population is vaccinated.

A second wave of the virus is sweeping across the nation, with at least 300,000 new cases a day for the last 8 days, according to the World Health Organization.

The death toll is over 200,000.  

"It's overwhelming, we do not have hospitals, or enough hospital beds. The medical staff is exhausted," said Shivani Vohra who lives in Gurugram, just outside of New Delhi in India. 

As of Friday, Vohra was on day 9 of quarantine after testing positive for the virus. 

"Each and every house has one patient who's trying to fight COVID here," said Vohra. 

She says the national healthcare system is on the verge of collapse, as makeshift crematories are popping up with no space to house the dead. 

"We have like a 3 day waiting time on cremation grounds here. They're using the hospital's parking areas to you know cremate the bodies," said Vohra. 

The country is in need of things like medical aid, oxygen cylinders, and basic medicines to save lives. 

At least 40 countries, including the U.S. have committed to helping. 

"Not being able to do anything from here is really tough," said Karin Bandi, Director of the India Association of Minnesota

The non-profit is partnering with 6 organizations to offer assistance. 

"There are many community members who want to help and we are trying to figure out how to extend our partnerships," said Bandi. 

Help in a time of need, when the lives of those in his homeland are depending on it. 

"I'm really scared to even open my messages or even get a call from India for that matter, because you don’t know what you’re going to hear. I'm really hoping and praying for this to be over soon," said Bandi. 

The White House announced Friday that the U.S. will ban all travel from India starting Tuesday, May 4. 

For more information on how to donate to the 6 organizations I.A.M. is partnering with click here