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Local M.D. loses 3 family members in India to COVID

He calls social distancing in New Delhi “impractical”
Dr. Peter Jassal lost two uncles and an aunt during the past week due to COVID in India.
Dr. Peter Jassal lost two uncles and an aunt during the past week due to COVID in India.
Published: Apr. 30, 2021 at 6:29 PM EDT
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SYLVANIA, Ohio (WTVG) - To many of us, India may seem like it’s half a world away, but to those who worship at the Hindu Temple in Sylvania, the COVID crisis in India is hitting close to home.

“Unfortunately, last 7 days, I lost 3 members of my family,” explains Peter Jassal, M.D., an anesthesiologist who lives in Perrysburg and is a member of the congregation at the Hindu Temple in Sylvania.

During the past week, Dr. Jassal says two of his uncles and one aunt died after contracting COVID in India, where the case count is surging.

“You can’t really, really isolate yourself no matter what you say or what you do. It becomes impractical,” Dr. Jassal said during a Zoom interview Friday, April 30, 2021. “The impractical part comes when several members of the family are living in a one or two bedroom apartment.”

Doctor Jassal calls news reports and images from New Delhi, India’s capital city where some of his family members live, upsetting.

“People dying. So many people dying and then you don’t have funeral homes to accommodate, mortuaries to take care of, cremation grounds, and those are the images that you’re seeing,” said Dr. Jassal.

Reports from news outlets such as CNN are also showing international cooperation, as many countries try to deliver supplies and offer aid to India during the worst of the pandemic there.

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