SAMBALPUR: Instead of mourning his father, a medicine shop owner of Parmanpur has been fulfilling his last wish by distributing free medicines to people in need for 10 days as a mark of respect for the deceased.
The chemist shop owner Akshaya Kumar Nayak’s father Ganesh Nayak passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest on May 12. A religious person, Ganesh believed that helping people in distress is a service to mankind.
“When my father was alive, he used to ask me to avoid wasteful expenditure by conducting ceremonies or inviting large numbers of people for feasts. Instead, he advised to utilise that money in a noble way”, Akshaya said. With people facing harrowing times due to Covid-19, Akshaya decided to fulfill his father’s last wish by using the money that would have otherwise been used in the death rituals, for providing free medicines to people coming to his shop throughout the mourning period. He began giving away the medicines on May 14 and will continue to do so till May 24.
Akshaya has been running a small medicine shop in Parmanpur market for the last seven years. “There are people whose livelihood has been badly hit and even a small help of free medicines would mean a lot to them”, said Akshaya, who provides regular medicines like Paracetamol, Vitamin-C and multi-vitamin tablets to people without prescription. But in case of specific medicines, he asks for prescriptions and after checking them, he provides the tablets free of cost.
“This way, I can ensure that the medicines are going to the right person”, he said, adding that he has adequate stock of all medicines. On May 14, around 300 people had come to Akshaya’s medicine shop and availed medicines free of cost and the number increased to 500 people a day later and on May 16, around 700 people collected medicines from him. Akshaya is also providing medicines at the doorstep of Covid-19 patients in home isolation.