‘Feed the Needy’: 11-day ‘Biriyani Challenge’ aims to collect Rs 4 crore

With a biriyani packet priced at Rs 100, it is estimated that the revenue from the sale of a packet will be sufficient to provide meals to 10 people.

Published: 18th March 2022 06:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th March 2022 06:30 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

KOZHIKODE: Vadakara-based non-governmental agency ‘Thanal’ has lined up a massive 11-day ‘Biriyani Challenge’ to raise funds to provide food to people living in the streets of Chennai, Hyderabad and Mumbai. Named ‘Feed the Needy’, the programme is slated to begin on March 20 targeting a collection of Rs 4 crore through the sale of four lakh biriyani packets across the state, except Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta. 

With a biriyani packet priced at Rs 100, it is estimated that the revenue from the sale of a packet will be sufficient to provide meals to 10 people. “Committees have been constituted in all districts for the success of the programme with hospitals, private companies, institutions and houses joining the programme at the local level. Two lakh biriyani packets are planned to be sold in Kozhikode district alone and 50,000 in Wayanad,” said Dr Idrees, chairman of Thanal. 

Thanal, a well-known name in philanthropic services, has been providing meals to 4,000 people outside the state — 3,000 in Bengaluru and 1,000 in New Delhi — since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

“A couple of years ago, we had visited New Delhi. It was a heartrending experience. I saw destitute people sleeping on the narrow pathway between two roads with vehicles veering past. Those people in the streets posed a question mark. Thus the programme to provide daily meals commenced. We are providing chicken biriyani in Delhi while it is idli and curry in Bengaluru and Chennai,” explained Idrees, who is also the deputy executive director at the Iqra Hospital in Kozhikode. 

A Malayali owned popular fresh food company is providing free idli batter to the initiative. Thanal has its own high-tech kitchens and equipment to prepare meals in all major cities where it has started food distribution. In New Delhi, the kitchen functions from a flat in Nizamuddin while in Bengaluru, it is in the heart of the city. By the end of the year, Thanal aims to provide 30,000 meals a day across all the cities.

“The participation of people from all walks of life will be the hallmark of the biriyani challenge. We have been receiving an overwhelming response to the meetings convened for the programme,” said Arif V K, vice-president of the Koyilandy unit of Thanal. Launched in 2008, Thanal has more than 10 dialysis units, and runs pain and palliative centre, HIV shelter, special school, early intervention centre, and homes for women and the differently-abled in various parts of Malabar.


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