International aid has poured in to India, where record infection rates have overwhelmed hospitals, depleting drugs, oxygen tanks and other supplies.
Earlier this month, Qatar Airways also carried 300 tonnes of aid free of charge from Doha to India.
Emirates will provide free standby capacity to carry supplies from Dubai-based charities, Division Senior Vice President Nabil Sultan told reporters, saying the mechanism could later be expanded to provide assistance to the ‘other parts.
“We are absolutely determined to help India,” he said.
The supplies will be organized through the Dubai International Humanitarian City, a hub used by many non-governmental organizations to transport aid globally. The supplies would be transported free of charge until further notice, Sultan said.
The first flight under the new “airlift” is scheduled for New Delhi on May 13 with 12.6 tonnes of multipurpose tents from the World Health Organization (WHO).
India reported 4,092 new deaths from the virus on Sunday, bringing the total to 242,362. Infections in the past 24 hours rose to a near-record 403,738, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 22.3 million.
Emirates operates 95 weekly flights to nine Indian cities: New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Cochin, Hyderabad and Trivandrum. These flights provide approximately 5,000 tonnes of weekly cargo capacity.