Google announces Rs 135 crore grant to India to combat Covid-19 surge

Google CEO
(Image credit: Future)

As India combats a fearful surge in Covid-19 cases, tech majors are stepping with their offer for help. Amazon is chipping in with aid to help fly in medical equipment from Singapore. 

Now, two other biggies, Google and Microsoft have also announced their bit to help salvage the situation.  

Google said it will be providing funding of Rs 135 crore for medical supplies and to help communities in general.

How will Google's contributions work

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Google CEO Sundar Pichai tweeted: "Devastated to see the worsening Covid crisis in India. Google & Googlers are providing Rs 135 Crore in funding to @GiveIndia, @UNICEF for medical supplies, orgs supporting high-risk communities, and grants to help spread critical information".

In a separate blog post, Sanjay Gupta, country head and VP, Google India gave the details of the grant. "This includes two grants from, Google's philanthropic arm, totaling Rs 20 crore ($2.6 million)." 

The first is to GiveIndia to provide cash assistance to families hit hardest by the crisis to help with their everyday expenses. The second will go to UNICEF to help get urgent medical supplies, including oxygen and testing equipment, to where it's needed most in India. 

"It also includes donations from our ongoing employee giving campaign -- so far more than 900 Googlers have contributed Rs 3.7 Crore ($500,000) for organizations supporting high-risk and marginalized communities," he added.

Covid-19 vaccine information on Search is available in English and eight Indian languages

Covid-19 vaccine information on Search is available in English and eight Indian languages. (Image credit: Google)

Google, however, said "we know the biggest way we can help is through our core information products like Search and Maps, YouTube and Ads. Our COVID features on Search are available in India, in English and eight Indian languages, and we continue to improve localization and highlight authoritative information. That includes information on where to get testing and vaccines; so far, Maps and Search surface thousands of vaccine sites, and we are working to add tens of thousands more."

Satya Nadella assures help 

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, for his part, said that his company is mobilising its resources to help the Covid-ravaged nation.

"I am heartbroken by the current situation in India. I'm grateful the U.S. government is mobilising to help. Microsoft will continue to use its voice, resources, and technology to aid relief efforts, and support the purchase of critical oxygen concentration devices," Nadella tweeted. 

India recorded, yet again, the highest single-day spike with 3,52,991 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, taking the total active cases to 28,13,658, as per a health ministry update today morning.

Five states --- Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Gujarat and Kerala --- have contributed 54% of the cases.

Balakumar K
Senior Editor

Over three decades as a journalist covering current affairs, politics, sports and now technology. Former Editor of News Today, writer of humour columns across publications and a hardcore cricket and cinema enthusiast. He writes about technology trends and suggest movies and shows to watch on OTT platforms.