THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Two hundred days and ten lakh food packets. As the clock strikes 11, a long queue forms at Thiruvananthapuram Medical College campus for the free food packets supplied by DYFI activists.
For past 200 days, DYFI has been distributing food packets, which has undoubtedly earned great appreciation from the patients and bystanders at Thiruvananthapuram Medical College. Under the ‘hridayapoorvam’ (from the heart) programme, which was launched by DYFI, about ten lakh food packets have been distributed till date.
On Wednesday, CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan was present at the medical college to mark the 200th day of this noble project. According to I Saju, district secretary of DYFI, around ten lakh food packets have been distributed till date. He said the distribution had been taking place everyday with clockwork precision and they have never missed a food date. “Even during hartals, we have distributed the food packets,” he said.
He said the programme has received good response from the patients and their bystanders. “On some days we have distributed up to 6,000 to 8,000 food packets. This only shows the overwhelming response that we receive here,” he said.
Saju said the district committee has already planned a programme for one year and hopes to continue distributing food packets punctually. “We have charted out a daily plan. Each mekhala committee has been allotted a day for distribution of food packets,” he said.
The food packets are collected by each unit committees under the mekhala committees. The unit committees are given a target and the packets are collected in the morning itself, he said. Since the food packets are collected from different homes.
This ensures participation of people in the initiative, he said. Saju said the unit members have been receiving good response from the people. People are enthusiastic and have been making food packets for collection as part of hridayapoorvam. “When the unit members visit the houses, people readily provide food packets. Some of them even provide more than one packet,” he said.
He also said hridayapoorvam helped in popularising organic farming among the youth. “After the programme was launched, many of the units began growing organic vegetables. These vegetables are handed over to the households that provide the food packets. The food for distribution is prepared using these organic vegetables,” Saju said.
According to Saju, 15 unit committees are already preparing food using the organic vegetables they cultivated. “As many as 50 unit committees have begun organic farming.” The activists have asked people to only use plantain leaves to pack the food. In the cities, the members buy plantain leaves and give it to those providing the food packets. “In this way, we can avoid the menace of plastic wastes,” he said.