Delhi

Man inspired for COVID work by help received in brother’s cancer treatment

On Monday afternoon, 29-year-old Dawar Naqvi was at a house of a COVID positive woman in Greater Noida with his friend Amir Abbas, setting up an IV for her. Before leaving her house, he wished her a speedy recovery.

Naqvi from Sahibabad graduated from Xavier School of Management in 2016. For the past one month, he has been running around wearing PPE kits almost daily providing people with COVID-related medicines, facilitating oxygen cylinders, and helping with doctor’s consultation with limited resources.

His reason and drive to risk his life in this raging pandemic — the unknown people who had helped his brother three years ago.

Naqvi’s brother Mannu was 18 when he died of blood cancer in a city hospital in 2018.

‘Paying back’

“In the last nine days of my brother’s life, I managed 19 donations of platelets, white blood cells, and plasma as he required. Out of those 19, I only knew eight people. The rest were complete strangers, who had helped us. I remember getting a call from a man in Hyderabad, who was ready to fly to Delhi to help us. This is a sort of payback for me,” he said.

Naqvi and a few of his friends made a WhatsApp group — GTY (Get Together Youth) — where requirements are shared on social media. “We have essentially been helping two kinds of people — those who can’t afford and those who don’t have resources — for instance those whose children are not in India and they need help,” he added.

Oxygen cylinders

Currently, this group is in possession of five oxygen cylinders — one of 70 litres, another of 20 litres and three of 10 litres each — all these been in circulation for a month. “We had bought it cheaper earlier and one of my cousins run an HVAC [Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning] business with whose help we get the 70-litre cylinder re-filled. For the rest, we are providing empty oxygen and people are getting them filled,” he said.

About 1,000 patients have received online consultation by Dr. Abbas and his circle of doctor friends. “But it’s very tough to satisfy patients’ families and attendants online because so many of them start asking questions. But we understand because everyone is scared,” he added.

He said they deliver medicines at the patients’ homes in their own vehicles but only if they are shown a valid prescription.

“Initially, we were also providing Remdisivir vials because one of my cousins is a distributor of the drug. But we stopped doing so after the government said it will only be given to hospitals. Most importantly, a few people who took from us further sold it at exorbitant prices, which became a primary reason for us to stop,” he said.

Talking about how Naqvi and his small group helped him, Huzair Raza, a resident of Sahibabad, said he and his wife both tested positive for COVID 19 in mid-April and they have daughters aged 12 and 6 to take care of.

“These guys helped us with all the meals for us and our daughters. They even provided us with coconut water and medicines whenever required. I will always be grateful to them,” he said.

While helping those in need, Naqvi has not stepped inside his parents’ room for the last month. He said they scold him, but he will continue his contribution till the second wave lasts.


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Printable version | Jun 22, 2021 10:58:02 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/man-inspired-for-covid-work-by-help-received-in-brothers-cancer-treatment/article34530169.ece

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