By Sanjeev Kumar Singh Chouhan
New Delhi: Amid the 21-day nationwide lockdown that’s in place to fight the coronavirus outbreak in the country, the police and the Resident Welfare Association (RWA) in South Delhi’s Sarita Vihar have joined hands to run a kitchen to ensure regular food supplies to the poor and needy living in the nearby areas.
Inspector Suman Kumar was on night duty on March 27 when he spotted scores poor families with little children on their laps embarking on a long walk to reach their native places hundreds of kilometers away.
They were marching braving unseasonal rains, totally unmindful of the hardships that the tiring journey entailed. He tried to stop them as per order, they halted for a brief moment before again continuing their journey.
It was a spectacle completely unanticipated and unforeseen. On one hand, the lockdown was a government decision to save the countrymen from the scourge of coronavirus, on the other, the plight of theses countrymen also posed a matter of concern.
That night, Kumar knocked the doors of a Gurdwara as also a community hall, but nothing came out of it. Around midnight, he decided not to let go the things as it is and be a mute spectator. Finally he made calls to the members of the RWA of Sarita Vihar, where he lives.
In the morning, Kumar along with the members of the RWA drew an action plan. A team of 2-3 halwais (confectioners) were called and hand-stoves, wheat flour, vegetables and fruits were arranged.
Since then, housewives and other female members of the area have joined hands in preparing food and wrapping them in paper packets. At the C-Pocket community centre in Sarita Vihar, food is being prepared in the kitchen space, while rations are stocked in a separate room. In the hall, tables and chairs have been laid out for wrapping the food to help the needy with the help of the police.
And everything is being prepared in a purely hygienic way and people are abiding by the social distancing norms as well.
Inspector Kumar said that they are ready to supply food to anyone needs them provided they are informed one day in advance.