Peterborough’s Sikh community raises thousands to support Covid relief effort in India

Sikhs in Peterborough have raised £8000 to help with the Covid-19 relief effort in India.

By Ben Jones
Sunday, 16th May 2021, 12:27 pm
Left to right: Kuldip Kaur, Sukhvir Singh (both Khalda Aid), Kulwant Singh (Temple Treasurer) and Jagdev Singh (Temple President).
Left to right: Kuldip Kaur, Sukhvir Singh (both Khalda Aid), Kulwant Singh (Temple Treasurer) and Jagdev Singh (Temple President).

India is currently experiencing a deadly second wave of the virus that is stretching what is already a fragile health system in many areas of the country to breaking point.

Cases are rocketing, with the virus now ripping through many rural areas of the country. On Wednesday (May 12) the country’s death toll passed 250,000, with a further 4,205 deaths reported as well as 348,421 infections.

The number of deaths is thought to be much higher than this though given the multiple claims of local authorities under-reporting or just not recording deaths accurately.

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Gurdwara Baba Budha Sahib Ji on Royce Road.

One of the main problems is the lack of space in hospitals and scarcity of oxygen supplies.

To help with this, Sikhs from the Gurdwara Baba Budha Sahib Ji on Royce Road put out an appeal for help within the city’s Sikh community.

In just over a week, they were able to raise £8000, which was presented as a cheque to Khalsa-Aid International this Sunday (May 9).

The charity made national headlines in December by cooking 2000 meals for lorry drivers stranded in Dover after France closed its border in response to a wave of new Covid cases in the UK.

They are now supporting the relief effort in India and delivered 2000 ventilators to the country last week and, with the help of the donation from the Peterborough Sikh community, were able to send another plane load on Tuesday (May 11).

Gurdwara President Jagdev Singh said: “We are all very aware of the Covid crisis that is happening in India now.

“The main problem is the lack of oxygen and medical supplies, so we decided to put an appeal out to the community in the city to see what we could do to help. They were very generous with their donations and we have managed to fill another plane’s worth of supplies.

“These will benefit anyone who needs it in the country, regardless of creed or religion. We are only interested in peace, the integration of all communities and making sure we can put an end to the crisis situation in India.”