Mumbai : Over 5,000 diamond artisans in Mumbai will be administered with the first dose of coronavirus vaccine at the free vaccination drive kick started jointly by the Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), Gems and Jewellery National Relief Foundation (GJNRF) and the World federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) on Monday.
Vinod Ghosalkar, chairman of Mumbai Building Repair and Reconstruction Board inaugurated the vaccination drive on Monday in presence of Sanjay Kothari, chairman, GJNRF, Ashok Gajera, Regional Chairman, (Western Region) GJEPC, Mehul Shah, vice president, Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB) and Rajnikant Vallabhai Hirapara, president, Borivali Diamond Cutters & Polishing Association.
The GJEPC has set the target to vaccinate 5,000 diamond artisans in the first stage of the drive supported by WFDB.
GJEPC has roped in Apollo Hospitals, Asia’s foremost integrated healthcare services provider, to administer the vaccination drive. The Borivali Diamond Cutters and Polishers Association provided the venue and logistics support to organise the event.
Speaking on the occasion, chief guest for the event Vinod Ghosalkar, Chairman of Mumbai Building Repair and Reconstruction Board said, “This is an important step taken by the industry associations to vaccinate the artisans of diamond industry, and in a way, it is helping the Maharashtra Chief Minister’s vision to achieve its goal of vaccinating entire population of the state at the earliest. The diamond sector has the potential to generate more jobs for the people of Mumbai and I would certainly appeal to the State government to facilitate and create a conducive environment for the growth of the diamond sector in Mumbai.”
Colin Shah, Chairman, GJEPC said, “Time is of essence; ensuring our artisans are vaccinated at the earliest is our top most priority. This would not only help them to live a normal life but will also allow the diamond units to function at full capacity, as we have been witnessing demand for gems and jewellery from all major export markets. I would like thank World Federation of Diamond Bourses and Gem & Jewellery National Relief Foundation for all the support in organising this vaccination drive.”
Yoram Dvash, President of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses said, “We are extremely gratified that the WFDB’s Diamond Aid campaign has enabled the vaccination of thousands of diamond workers in the Mumbai area. We launched the Diamond Aid campaign out of a deep sense of mutual responsibility for the diamond community worldwide. Through our efforts, we were able to mobilize the support of large parts of the diamond and jewellery world and to raise tens of thousands of dollars for this cause. We thank all of our donors, as well as the BDB, the GNJRF and the GJEPC for making this vaccination drive a reality.”
Sanjay Kothari, Chairman, GJNRF commented, “The support of international diamond organisations has revealed the humane face of our industry and shows that they care for our artisans. In this difficult time, GJNRF has been approached by domestic and well as international partners offering help. This initiative is a combined effort of whole diamond industry as WFDB is a global organisation which covers all diamantaires of the world. With support from our partners, GJNRF has been doing everything possible in the fight against Covid-19. I would like to thank WFDB for funding this Covid Vaccination drive, and GJEPC in taking the lead in organising this drive.