WITH millions of blue-collared workers and migrants impacted due to the COVID-19 lockdown, especially in top metros, there is an urgent requirement to keep providing them access to basic relief services such as food, shelter, healthcare and even jobs, wherever possible.
Bengaluru based AI tech start-up Vahan, which matches job seekers with employers inside messaging apps such as Whatsapp, and Bharti Airtel (Airtel) are bringing together their resources and using technology to connect such impacted workers in Delhi and Bengaluru with the nearest support centres and NGOs.
Airtel will launch a massive SMS campaign to reach all such impacted workers on its network. The SMS, which will be sent in English, Hindi, and Kannada, will carry a quick link that will guide users to Vahan’s platform.
Once the receiver clicks the link, Vahan will use its advanced Artificial Intelligence solution inside messaging apps such as Whatsapp to connect the user with the nearest relief providers. Vahan has already created a resource pool of 1000+ help groups, NGOs who are working actively to help fellow citizens.
Madhav Krishna, CEO of Vahan, said, “We at Vahan, in close partnership with Airtel, are proud to be able to leverage the power of our technology to touch millions of the neediest, when they require our help the most. We are also excited about our ability to help these people get jobs as we all work towards returning to normalcy”.
Airtel had extended the pre-paid pack validity for millions of low-income customers on its network. All these customers were able to get incoming calls on their Airtel mobile numbers even after the validity of their plan is exhausted. Airtel had also credited an additional Rs 10 of talk time in the pre-paid accounts of all these customers to enable them to make calls or send SMS and therefore stay connected with their loved ones.
In October 2019, Airtel had acquired a stake in Vahan as part of its Startup Accelerator Programme.