Entrepreneurs of Kolkata come together to combat COVID

By Anju Ann Mathew

Entrepreneurs of Kolkata (EOK) — in partnership with the Rotary Club of Calcutta Visionaries — has launched an initiative ‘Breathe Again’ to support those essential requirements that are of high priority in the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Active since May 2020, the group is led by Sagar Daryani (Founder, Wow! Momo), Pulak Chamaria (Owner, Infinity Group), Aditya Ladsaria (Founder, Chai Break), and Amit Saraogi (Managing Director, Anmol Feeds), among others.

EOK is facilitating COVID-19 care facilities in and around Kolkata. It aims to set up over 500 HDU/isolation beds in partnership with government and private hospitals to increase oxygen supply. In fact, it is also procuring oxygen concentrators, ventilators, BiPAP machines, and other medical devices.

“We aim to equip the government and hospitals with secondary forces. This initiative provides the business and startup ecosystem of Kolkata to give back to the city in this hour of need,” said Sagar Daryani, Founder, Wow! Momo.

At present, the group is setting up over 200 ICU beds in Kolkata. It has also donated over 100 life-saving machines, while some are yet to be donated.

Besides Kolkata, EOK is also expanding its support to Purulia, Midnapore, Burdwan, Siliguri, and Durgapur districts in West Bengal.

Additionally, EOK has donated over 35 BiPAP ventilators imported from Singapore, which are already in use.

Speaking on the initiative, Amit Saraogi, said, “EOK, and all those associated with this initiative, are dedicated to helping India and our fellow countrymen at this hour of need. We want to use our connections and strengths in the best way possible to flatten the curve.”

So far, 13 beds are live at The Calcutta Heart Clinic and Hospital Society in Saltlake, five beds at Sri Jain Hospital, and another 25 hospital beds at Anandalok Hospital.

Besides, the group will set up 40 new beds at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Midnapore and 10 ICU beds at Maharaja Agrasen Hospital, Siliguri.

Additionally, about 55 new BiPAP machines ordered will be donated to several hospitals in need. In fact, new life-saving equipment will reach Techno India DAMA Hospital, where installations have already begun.

EOK is also supporting over 300 health care workers and nursing staff across hospitals in West Bengal.

"National and international support has been pouring in for the 'Breathe Again' fundraiser, and hopefully, with all the collective resources, we will be able to stand in support of the doctors and frontline workers effectively in the weeks to come,” said Meghdut Roy Chowdhury, Director of Global Operations at Techno India Group, and a member of EOK.

Since its inception, EOK has raised over Rs 5 crore for the initiative. Meanwhile, global corporates are also coming forward and supporting the group as part of their CSR initiative.

The group is also raising funds on the crowdfunding platform Milaap for the cause to reach its target of Rs 7.5 crore.

“We request more people from Kolkata to come forward and contribute to making this initiative larger and more impactful success. Even a Rs 100 each contributed by Kolkata residents will go a long way in making this crowdfunding more impactful,” says Sagar.

To donate, log onto www.eok.org.in or give a missed call to 9664896648.

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