Polygon co-founder raises $2.2M for India COVID-19 relief


COVID-19 has infected more than 17.6 million people in India. A crypto-based relief fund is raising millions to help the country cope with the disaster.

The cryptocurrency community has donated over $2.2 million to help India battle a resurgence in COVID-19 cases that has gripped the South Asian country over the past month. 

Polygon co-founder Sandeep Nailwal established the COVID-19 relief fund to get more food, vaccines and medicine to those in need. On April 24, Nailwal called on his Twitter followers to chip in by donating tokens to a multi-sig ERC-20 address.

“Can’t take this sitting down anymore, I am going to run a Covid relief campaign in lieu of what’s going on in India,” Nailwal said. “Need help from the Global crypto community.”

Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin has reportedly donated tokens worth roughly $650,000, according to Markets Insider. Former Coinbase CTO Balaji Srinivasan also donated $50,000.

Brett Lee, a famous Australian cricketeer, has also pledged 1 Bitcoin (BTC) to the fund.

Incidences of COVID-19 are exploding across India, with the daily infection rate eclipsing 350,000 for five straight days. On Monday, official data showed there were 352,991 new reported cases over the previous 24-hour period, with at least 2,812 deaths.

More than 17.6 million cumulative COVID cases have been reported in India so far, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on public health and the global economy, forcing many nations to reevaluate their pandemic response plans, supply chains and health systems. Globally, more than 148 million people have been infected with the novel disease. Johns Hopkins attributes more than 3.1 million deaths to COVID.

For India, the second wave of the pandemic was exacerbated by a combination of poor political choices, bad communications and neglect of public health practices, according to The Hindu, an English-language daily newspaper headquartered in Chennai. Health scientists at the India Institute of Technology Kanpur believe cases could peak in mid-May.

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