BTS’ Indian Fans Raise Over Five Lakhs for Assam Flood Relief Funds
The South Korean group’s fandom BTS ARMY are known for their active participation in charity drives worldwide and India is no exception
South Korean group BTS’ Indian fans have donated over INR 5,80,000 (roughly USD 8,000) to relief funds in Assam after the North East Indian state was ravaged by floods over the last few weeks. The initiative, which kicked off yesterday led by the Twitter fan page @btshelpsindia, met their goal of five lakhs in under 24 hours, even raking in an extra half lakh before closing the donation portal.
Assam is severely affected by floods every monsoon, but this year has been especially disastrous due to the added burden of the country dealing with COVID-19. While the rainfall has reduced over the past two days and the water is receding, nearly 40 lakh people remain affected, with several thousands homeless and 71 dead.
In addition to the 27 out of 33 districts affected, around 76 animals were killed after 85 percent of the Kaziranga National Park was submerged in the flood. The Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) reported that currently efforts are underway to also rescue as many animals as possible, since the park is also home to the endangered one-horned Indian rhinoceros.
BTS fans–also known as BTS ARMY–are known for their active participation in charity drives worldwide. The Indian division of the fandom mobilized to donate as much as possible after a plea for help from a Facebook user went viral:
After seeing the efforts by the fandom, the same Facebook user commented, “For those who don’t know, BTS is a South Korean band that has a huge fanbase including India. They are the same group that you laugh calling hijra, chakka, gay, dari nuhuwa, plastic, lipsync and what not. But what you don’t know is that they constantly sing about self love and mental health. They donate millions of dollars every year and are official brand ambassadors of UNICEF in South Korea. Their fans never shy away from donating too.”
Earlier this ear BTS donated USD one million to the #BlackLivesMatter movement which led to a massive ARMY-led charity drive called #MatchAMillion where the fandom attempted to match the amount donated by BTS. At the end of the campaign the fandom had contributed over USD two million, doubling BTS’ own donation.