Bengaluru, Karnataka: Akshaya Patra started its COVID-19 Relief Feeding Centre at KR Market in Bengaluru. The programme was launched by Hon’ble Home Minister of Karnataka, Shri. Basavaraj Bommai on Saturday, 15 May 2021. Through this centre, Akshaya Patra will serve 1,000 free cooked meals to COVID frontline warriors, industrial labourers and economically disadvantaged people between 12.00 pm to 3.00 pm every day. Over the next few days, the Foundation will start 3-4 similar feeding centres in other parts of the city.
Akshaya Patra has been undertaking food relief in several locations across the country since March 2020. With the country grappling with the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Foundation has decided to scale up its feeding efforts. Working with the Government and its donors, Akshaya Patra is reaching out to vulnerable populations to ensure their food and nutrition security.
Since the announcement of the state-wide lockdown in April 2021 to contain the second wave of the COVID-19 outbreak, Akshaya Patra has cumulatively served over 5 lakh meals (as of 15 May) to economically disadvantaged people in Bengaluru. These include construction site workers, industrial labourers, slum dwellers, street-side vendors and individuals at old-age homes and orphanages. On average, about 50,000 meals are served in the city every day.
Simultaneously, about 800 cooked meals are being served to the staff, attendees and frontline workers at the KC General Hospital (Malleshwaram) and Victoria Government Hospital.
Over the next few days, the Foundation will scale up the initiative to serve over 5,000 meals in government hospitals across the city. Additionally, it will also be working with the Government to provide a six-course meal to 800 COVID patients at the Victoria Hospital.
Akshaya Patra is also helping the police personnel, who are tirelessly working for the safety of people during the pandemic. The organisation is providing over 3,500 cooked meals and 2,500 snacks kits daily to the police personnel as a part of its ongoing relief efforts.
Hon’ble Home Minister, Shri. Basavaraj Bommai, said, “No one should go hungry during the lockdown. In the past Akshaya Patra has been a strong pillar of support, hence requested them to undertake this feeding initiative. As a result, today they are supporting the police staff and vulnerable people with hot, nutritious tasty meal.” He further expressed his delight
to launch such a noble program and wholeheartedly praised the Foundation’s efforts to feed 5,000 policemen every day as a part of this initiative.
Speaking about the initiative, Madhu Pandit Dasa, Chairman – The Akshaya Patra Foundation, said, “I want to thank our Hon’ble Home Minister, Shri. Basavaraj Bommai and the Government of Karnataka for placing trust in us and enabling us to serve the people during the ongoing pandemic. I also want to express my gratitude to our corporate partners, individual donors and volunteers for proactively coming forward to support our food relief efforts across the country.” He further added, “Akshaya Patra has always strived to work with the Government to extend all possible services to the people of our nation in difficult times.
We will continue our efforts and try to reach out to as many people as possible during this crisis.”
The Government has been implementing necessary relief efforts to help vulnerable populations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. On its part, Akshaya Patra is aiding the Government’s efforts through food relief. Since March last year, the Foundation has been undertaking relief feeding across the country through its kitchens and makeshift packaging centres with the support of the Government, corporate partners, individual donors and volunteers. As of 30 April 2021, Akshaya Patra has cumulatively served over 12.4 crore meals to vulnerable populations across 19 states and one UT. These include 6.07 crore cooked meals, 10.19 lakh essential grocery kits (over 4 crore meal servings) and 10.63 lakh Happiness Kits with dry ration (over 2 crore meal servings), hygiene products and educational supplies.