Cops feed 600 daily wagers amid lockdown
The police are providing meals to nearly 600 industrial and construction workers who have either lost their jobs due to the pandemic or are facing financial difficulties due to the ongoing lockdown.
A team from the Manesar police station prepares the food and delivers it to designated spots, where it is shared with workers twice a day.
Yashwant Yadav, station house officer (SHO) of IMT Manesar police station, said that they started this initiative after many workers approached them to get food from a mess on their premises. “Labourers used to ask for food as they were unable to buy even a single meal. Due to the lockdown, community lunches stopped and many factories have been shut since the lockdown was announced.”
“They offered to work in exchange for food, but we told them that we had enough staff but that they were welcome to have meals,” he said.
After more than 15 people approached them, the police started preparing more food and the message spread through word of mouth, following which the numbers started increasing daily. Two cooks were also hired to help with the preparations for lunch and dinner.
KK Rao, the commissioner of police, said that in a survey on May 8, they located four sites where daily wagers were sleeping without having food. “A team was formed to feed the needy and ration was bought by the police station staff. They did not ask for any help or fund and for nearly 10 days, they were spending from their own pockets. Now, the ration is being sent from the police headquarters,” he said.
At present, the department is supplying food to workers at the four locations, including Labour Chowk. The initiative is being announced through loudspeakers in areas where daily wagers are staying and social distancing and mask discipline is enforced, said officials.
“I lost job my again this year and could not tell my family members as they need money. I am hopeful I will get another job soon and will start saving and sending money to my ailing mother in Bihar. Last year, I had returned to my village after the lockdown was announced and returned to Gurugram after eight months,” said Lankesh Kumar, who worked with an automobile company.
Another labourer, Kanwar Singh of Bihar, said “There was no hope to get any meal and we had slept on an empty stomach for two nights before we got freshly cooked food. We sleep near the police station so that we do not have to travel to eat on time and they do not run short of food.”