India (Mission Network News) — For a country with a population as dense as India, the number of COVID-19 cases remains relatively low – over 21,000 coronavirus cases as of yesterday in a population of 1.3 billion.
However, health experts say the virus in India may not peak until June or July. And for now, India’s lockdown measures are taking a toll on the poor and day laborers.
Todd VanEk, president and CEO of Mission India, says, “Here in the US, many of us know of people who live month-to-month or paycheck-to-paycheck. But in India, 40 percent of the population are day laborers, and they live day-to-day. That is, they earn to eat. With the impact of the lockdown, it’s created a huge humanitarian crisis in terms of a lack of resources for food.”
Christians are scrambling to help with relief kits from Mission India. But Indian Christians are often seen as social pariahs and suffer oppression at the hands of religious extremists. India currently holds 10th place on the World Watch List for extreme Christian persecution.