Prince Charles makes personal donation and expresses deep sadness over COVID-19 crisis in India

By Zach Harper

Prince Charles has sent a message to the people of India and made a donation to a campaign that aims to raise funds for oxygen concentrators as COVID-19 continues to take a staggering toll on the country.

Every day since April 24, India has recorded more new coronavirus infections than any other nation, setting grim records that have been higher than 350,000 new cases on a daily basis. The death toll in the country of 1.2 billion people has also skyrocketed. April 28 saw the country hit with a record 3,293 COVID-related deaths in a single day, and saw its death toll for the entire pandemic soar past 201,000, according to The Associated Press.

"I have been deeply saddened by the tragic images we have all seen as COVID-19 taxes its horrific toll in India," the Prince of Wales said in a statement on April 28.

The kind-hearted future King announced he has made a personal donation to the British Asian Trust's Oxygen For India. It aims to raise money for oxygen concentrators and work with local partners in India to get them to hospitals and patients who need them quickly. The 71-year-old and a group of British Asian business leaders co-founded the British Asian Trust in 2017. The organization works to fight poverty throughout India. Charles also encouraged people to donate to the campaign themselves.

Over the last week, numerous news reports have said India's hospitals are overwhelmed and running out of oxygen, and that the health system is stretched nearly to the point of collapse.

Charles meets Hindu priests outside the Akshardham Temple in New Delhi during a visit to India in 2013. Photo:© Chris Jackson/Getty Images

"Like many others, I have a great love for India and have enjoyed many wonderful visits to the country," Charles continued in his heartfelt message.

"Indian aid and ingenuity has been a support to other countries through this immensely difficult time. As India has helped others, so now we must help India.

"I would also want those suffering the effects of this pandemic in India to know that they are in my thoughts and prayers. Together, we will win this battle."

Charles recovered from COVID-19 himself last year, quarantining at his and Duchess Camilla's Birkhall home at the Royal Family's Balmoral estate in March and early April. Camilla tested negative. The Prince of Wales later revealed he lost his sense of smell and taste while he was getting over the illness, and thankfully only had mild symptoms.

Charles and Camilla have both since been vaccinated, with the Duchess of Cornwall adding in March 2021 that she had received the AstraZeneca vaccine.

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