Coronavirus Pandemic: Here's what corporates are doing to assist BMC in fight against COVID-19

Coronavirus Pandemic: Here's what corporates are doing to assist BMC in fight against COVID-19

With the number of coronavirus cases increasing gradually in Mumbai, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is readying itself for a war against the COVID-19 pandemic. The BMC capacity-building and research structure at Powai seemed like an abandoned structure a fortnight ago, but today has transformed into a sanitised isolation facility with 100 beds.

The change in the condition of the facility has been brought with the help of various firms in Mumbai who have contributed to the civic body's fight against the outbreak. As per a report by TOI, a body of real estate developers, MCHI-CREDAI, carried out the makeover on BMC's request. While the assist from MCHI-CREDAI is noteworthy, several big companies have also been hand-holding the civic body in tackling the pandemic which has already claimed six lives in Mumbai.

As per a BMC official, they have received funding or even the assurance for it for COVID-19 related work ranging from hiring taxis to funding for face masks to diagnostic test kits.

One can note that the corporate goodwill arises in the wake of a circular issued by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs on March 22. The circular said that 'funds spent on measures to tackle the coronavirus outbreak will be counted towards the corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity of companies'.

While Praveen Pardeshi refused to comment on the extent of corporate funding but Tata Sons is helping by procuring 60 ventilators and also providing financial aid. On the other hand, RPG Foundation is providing BMC with 2.4 lakh nitrile gloves and medical kits.

According to an official, the corporates have a lot of goodwill in the market. For instance, Tatas operate a hospital in Jamshedpur which gives them easy access in procuring ventilators from there. Taj Sats are contributing to the cause by distributing 5,000 packets to the BMC hospital staff.

Godrej Industries, on the other hand, has offered to supply BMC with 4,000+ three-ply facemask and gloves. Whereas Amit Chandra Foundation has arranged for 1,000 N95 masks along with 1,000 Gamex gloves. The Sir H.N. Foundation Hospital has collaborated with BMC to set up a COVID-19 facility at Seven Hills Hospitals in Marol.

Talking to TOI, MCHI-CREDAI president Nayan Shah said that other than revamping the isolation facility at Powai, they have provided 250 beds. So far, they have pooled around Rs. 1.25 crore.

All the supplies it receives from the corporates are being stocked up at the Andheri Sports Complex. The BMC is dispatching the necessary materials to the hospitals from there.