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30.04.2021 | Press Release

Corona Crisis in India Escalates

Welthungerhilfe Provides 100,000 Euros for Immediate Assistance

Ein Mann, eine Frau und zwei Jungen mit Masken stehe in einer Schlange.
Residents of a slum in Uttar Pradesh, India, wait for food to be distributed. Welthungerhilfe complains that the poorest people in cities and rural areas are once again the hardest hit. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
Simone Pott Team Communications

Bonn/Berlin, 2021-04-30 The situation faced by people in India is becoming more desperate by the day. The number of infections and deaths in cities is rising dramatically and the medical system has completely collapsed. The situation is also deteriorating massively in rural areas. Welthungerhilfe deplores that the poorest in the cities and in the countryside will once more be the worst affected.

“The poorest people are the ones who are least able to protect themselves and stay at home. They have to go out every day to look for work or work in the fields, as otherwise they have no income and no food to survive. At the same time, in the countryside there is widespread ignorance about the virus, and people are not able to observe the preventive measures. For fear of infection, ill families are losing the support and solidarity of their neighbours”, explains Nivedita Varshneya, Country Director for Welthungerhilfe in Delhi.

Welthungerhilfe assumes that the crisis will extend to neighbouring countries: Infection and death rates are also spiking in Pakistan, Nepal and Afghanistan, and their health systems are overloaded. “The virus and its mutations do not stop at borders. That is why we urgently need more vaccines in India and in all the countries of the Global South. I also call on the German government to finally impose a temporary suspension of patent rights for manufacture of vaccines”, says Varshneya.

Welthungerhilfe is working with its partners to supply families in urgent need with food or cash. It is also helping local authorities in various districts to set up quarantine stations and run awareness campaigns. Hotlines and contact points are also being set up in rural areas, to provide necessary information about vaccination and other protective measures.

Our Country Director and other German-speaking staff members are available for interviews.

Press pictures for download

In a slum on the border between Delhi and the neighboring state of Uttar Pradesh, a woman and her children wait for food to be distributed. Many families are starving because the parents are losing their jobs due to the Corona pandemic. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
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Residents of a slum in Uttar Pradesh, India, wait for food to be distributed. Welthungerhilfe complains that the poorest people in cities and rural areas are once again the hardest hit. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
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Kallu (32) comes from near Patna in the Indian state of Bihar. He has been living in a slum on the outskirts of Delhi for about 15 years and earns his living by collecting, sorting and selling garbage. Due to the Corona pandemic, he is currently unable to pursue his work. Like all the other residents of the slum, he depends on food donations. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
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On the side of a main street in Delhi, people are queuing for food. To keep enough distance, circles have been painted on the ground where people are supposed to wait. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
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A rickshaw driver is driving on an almost empty road. The driver is wearing a protective breathing mask. There is a curfew in parts of India due to the Corona pandemic. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
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An elderly woman sells corn grains as pigeon feed. However, she does not have many customers, because due to the curfew, only a few people are on the road on this main street. © Florian Lang/Welthungerhilfe
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Usage note:Please note that the pictures may only be used in a Welthungerhilfe context and may not be passed on to third parties. Images must bear the credit copyright "Photographer/Welthungerhilfe". No long-term archiving. Please delete pictures after use!

Welthungerhilfe is one of the largest private aid organisations in Germany; politically independent and non-denominational. It is fighting for “Zero Hunger by 2030”. Since it was founded in 1962, more than 9,830 overseas projects in 70 countries have been supported with €3.95 billion. Welthungerhilfe works on the principle of empowering people to help themselves from fast disaster relief to reconstruction and long-term development cooperation projects with national and international partner organisations.

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