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Elderly, disabled in city appeal for assistance during lockdown

The lockdown being imposed in Chennai might have ensured that most people remain indoors and out of harm’s way, but it might still be causing massive inconvenience to certain sections of the society, say disability rights activists and senior citizen groups.

Elderly, disabled in city appeal for assistance during lockdown
Arnav Rathore, a student of MCTM International School, Mylapore, Chennai


With minimum access to essential supplies like food, medicines and therapy, many in the city have been left with little to no option during the lockdown and have appealed to the public for assistance. Physical access to grocery stores and vegetable shops remain an issue for people with disability. Despite an order from the State government for delivery services like Big Basket and Dunzo to continue operations, handling these apps are not a simple task for the disabled community, said TNM Deepak, disability rights activist and founder, December 3 Movement. “For people with physical disabilities, using these apps is impossible.

Additionally, the releases that are put out for grocery stores are not in an accessible format either,” he said.

Access to medication is another issue, said D Rajashekaran, secretary, Tamil Nadu Senior Citizens Association. “Many have also been bereft of their caregivers and this can cause issues,” he said. Ifitkhar Mohammed Zia, volunteer, Organisation for Rare Diseases India, added that logistics for caregivers and those needing regular treatments, oxygen cylinders and the like needs to be clarified by the authorities.

Moreover, volunteers are facing difficulties while trying to assist those in need. One volunteer, on condition of anonymity, said, “We volunteered to assist the elderly and the disabled, but were asked to stop by the police.

Hence we have ceased ops for now.

” Class 11 student offers help in delivering essentials 

A Class 11 student has taken upon himself to become a guardian of sorts of senior citizens residing at Mylapore and Abhiramapuram by offering to deliver a bag of essential commodities needed for a week or two during the shutdown.

In a social media post, the teenager identified himself as Arnav Rathore, a student of MCTM International School, Mylapore, Chennai, and highlighted that many are faced with plight and that more help is needed. He will be assisted by his friends and the Aranya Foundation. The help group has been receiving more than half a dozen calls on a daily basis. The group can be contacted on WhatsApp at 9818316654, called on 9444352542 or a mail could also be sent to –

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