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New Delhi: In what may possibly be a first from an India Premier League (IPL) franchise, cricket team Rajasthan Royals on Thursday announced a contribution of 7.5 crores (over $1mn) towards covid relief efforts in India. The franchise said that its goal is to help with immediate support to people who have been severely impacted by the second wave of covid-19 in the country.

The team said that the amount has been collectively raised by its players, team owners and management. They have been working along with the Rajasthan Royals' philanthropic arm Royal Rajasthan Foundation (RRF) in partnership with the British Asian Trust (BAT) towards covid relief efforts. Royal Rajasthan Foundation (RRF) is headed by the executive chairman of Royal Multisport Pvt. Ltd, the company that owns the Rajasthan Royals.

The funds raised by Rajasthan Royals will help people across the country, with an initial focus on Rajasthan, where the RRF has numerous initiatives it continues to support.

BAT works closely with the Indian government on multiple initiatives – especially in the area of skills and education. The Trust’s founder, Prince Charles, launched an emergency "Oxygen for India" appeal, which is currently focused on the acquisition and distribution of oxygen concentrators, devices that can provide enriched gas straight from the air, to treat patients when hospital supplies are under strain.

“Having the team owners and its players come together has enabled this initiative to reach the scale it has, providing aid to tackle the current crisis and help people get the single most pressing necessity at this time – oxygen," said a statement from the franchise.

Earlier, international players have extended their support towards covid relief measures in India. Australian cricketer and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) pacer Pat Cummins has contributed $50,000 to the PM Cares Fund in the fight against covid-19 while Australian former pace-bowler Brett Lee took to Twitter stating that he had donated one Bitcoin to Crypto Relief to help with the purchase of oxygen supplies. A Bitcoin roughly converts to 40 lakhs.

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