Here Are Some Startups Helping Out With Chennai Floods

With rains continuing to lash away in Tamil Nadu, and the Army being called in for rescue, the situation is dire for residents of Chennai. Flights and trains have been cancelled as well. NDTV’s liveblog is currently tracking relief efforts as water levels continue to rise in parts of the city, and the Indian Army moves in with three more columns.

A handful of startups and companies from around the country are stepping in to provide relief efforts in whatever way they can.

Paytm is offering Rs. 30 worth of free talk-time to anyone who would like to remain connected. Users who want to avail of this facility can dial Paytm’s hotline (18001030033).

Practo has a spreadsheet with phone numbers of verified doctors and hospitals available for help in anonline spreadsheet.

(Also see: Telcos Offer Free Calls, Data to Subscribers in Flood-Hit Chennai)

Zomato has launched a scheme where they will provide meals for flood relief victims, and is offering to buy one meal from their end for every one purchased on the website. Meals can be purchased for two, four, or a hundred people, at Rs. 100, 200, and Rs. 5,000 respectively. Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyaltweeted that over 25,000 meals were ordered by users, making for a total of 50,000 meals served, once the company adds in its share.

(Also see: Chennai Floods: Facebook Activates Safety Check, Google Sets Up Resource Page)

Zoomcar is providing free pick up and drop facilities to the nearest hospital, requests can be tweeted to them, and accessed on its hotline at 044-42052772.

Several Chennai residents have opened up their homes to the stranded, and there’s an online spreadsheet cataloguing places available for shelter, food offerings, rescue needed, helplines, and doctor numbers, as well as volunteer details.

Ola has created safety zones equipped with relief supplies and first aid. This service is open to everyone, free of cost, with address details and contact numbers provided on its blog. A fortnight ago, it launched OlaBoats, employing professional rowers and fishermen to offer assistance in Chennai’s waterlogged areas.

Messaging app Lookup has partnered with youth volunteer non-profit Bhumi, to enable doorstep pickup of  clothes and other materials from Chennai, to be donated to the flood victims using the chat app.

Delhi-based Urbanclap, a marketplace for local service providers had reportedly offered free pest control services in rain-affected areas last month.

Airtel, while not exactly a startup, is providing free credit of 50MB mobile data for Airtel prepaid mobile customers with a validity of two days.

Vodafone is offering pre-approved chota-credit of Rs. 10 to all pre-paid customers, and a credit of ten minutes for Vodafone to Vodafone calls, and 100MB of mobile data to all customers with data-enabled handsets.

Know of any other startups or companies providing help? Send us a tweet and we’ll update our copy if it’s relevant.