COVID-19: Over 150 Pakistani taxi drivers give free rides to Spanish health workers

  • 6 months   ago
COVID-19: Over 150 Pakistani taxi drivers give free rides to Spanish health workers
Sheraz Syed transports a healthcare worker for free. [Sheraz Syed/Al Jazeera]

Over 150 Pakistani cab drivers part of the initiative in COVID-19 hit Spain

Barcelona's Pakistani diaspora also providing food parcels to homeless and people in need and producing protective gear.

Pakistani taxi drivers are providing free transportation services to medical staff in Spain, one of the worst hit countries by the coronavirus pandemic and social media users are cheering them on.

According to a news report by German news outlet, Deutsche Welle (DW) Urdu, Pakistani taxi drivers are providing free of charge rides to doctors and nurses working on the frontline to fight COVID-19 in the European country.

Mohammad Shahbaz Khatana, is a taxi driver in Barcelona and he was quoted as saying: “We are providing all doctors who are working to treat the patients in this pandemic free rides from home to hospital and from hospital to home.”


A clip shared on Twitter by Pakistani actress Nadia Jamil, @NJLahori, shows how the drivers get in contact with healthcare workers and take them to their destinations.

In the video, a Pakistani cab driver is shown facilitating medical staff. The driver later introduces himself and describes his motive behind providing the services.

“My name is Syed Sheraz and I am from Pakistan. There are hundreds of Pakistani drivers, along with me, providing social services in Barcelona during this time. Whenever a calamity strikes, we are always ready to provide our services to the host country.

"In 2017, there was a terrorist incident, even at that time Pakistanis provided residents social services, by giving them free rides," he is heard saying.

The video report states that there are more than 150 cab drivers currently participating in the initiative.

In the clip, a Spanish doctor also introduces himself and expresses gratitude towards the Pakistani cab drivers providing their services at a time of crisis.

In addition to the taxi drivers' inititative, over the past two weeks, the local Pakistani community has stepped in to help.

Grocery store owners have converted industrial warehouses into spaces taxi drivers can use to organise food parcel distribution to the homeless and families in need.

Hundreds of masks and robes for medical workers are being sewn together at pace at the the Catalan Islamic Cultural Centre.