Several people, who lost their jobs from hotels, barber shops and other commercial establishments during this lockdown crisis, feel abandoned by their owners and left to fend themselves on streets and bus stand areas in Madurai. To mitigate hunger of these people, G Suthakaran, the youth and resident of Oomachikulam, Madurai, along with four of his friends volunteers to aide in serving food and water for them in parts of Mattuthavani, Pudur and Tamukkam Grounds.
With limited money available, food items such as idly, dosa, chappati and white pongal were being served to such people at night, he said. His charity work also helps provide sustenance for a widow, who runs a roadside eatery at Oomachikulam, since she’s paid modest sums to cook these food items to serve the needy. A couple of months ago, her husband died of cardiac arrest. During COVID first wave lockdown, monkeys at Alagarkovil were served bananas, tomatoes and sweet candy for 47 consecutive days, Suthakaran told DT Next on Saturday. “As they had no access to bath, water tankers were arranged once in three days for them to take bath. Efforts are also on to take them to the reach of the dwelling places by vehicles of courier companies as there’s no restriction for courier service,” he added. About thirty to thirty five persons, who were left abandoned were found lying down on platforms at Mattuthavani bus stand.
They had their families in Dindigul, Pattukottai, Srivilliputhur and Theni. Since transport was cut off during the lockdown, they had no other go but to look for kindhearted people with a sense of dedication and service to offer them food, Kaliappan, who worked as a waiter in local restaurant at Kalavasal.
According to sources, the Mattuthavani police had recently initiated steps to take those starving people from the bus stand to accommodate in a care home, but they were reluctant, fearing COVID spread.