Tiruchy man serves fresh, hot food for free to kin of patients at government hospitals

Seeing the service in Tiruchy, Ravindrakumar was approached by people in Pudukkottai.

Published: 21st November 2019 10:57 AM  |   Last Updated: 21st November 2019 02:15 PM   |  A+A-

VG Ravindrakumar, treasurer, Agasthiyar Annadhanam trust serving food to people.

VG Ravindrakumar, treasurer, Agasthiyar Annadhanam trust serving food to people.

Express News Service

PUDUKKOTTAI: Last week, a van pulled up early in the morning outside Pudukkottai Government
Hospital. A few volunteers got their vessels ready and started serving piping hot breakfast to visitors and patients’ relatives.

The food was served free of cost by VG Ravindrakumar, treasurer, Agasthiyar Annadhanam trust. The trust has been serving free food outside Tiruchy GH for the past 29 years. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast is served from 7 am to 8 am, lunch from noon to 1 pm and dinner from 7 pm to 8 pm.

The initiative was started in 1990 by V Govindaraj, Ravindrakumar’s father. “My father always wanted to
do social service. When he visited Tiruchy Government Hospital, he felt bad looking at the poor condition of patients. He started serving hot water and when the response was good, he started serving kanji (porridge),” said Ravindrakumar.

What started with hot water, today feeds almost 1,000 people daily in Tiruchy.  Ravindrakumar and his wife prepare the meals at home. His day starts at 3.30  am and he begins making breakfast of kanji or pongal.

For lunch and dinner, it is variety rice, sambar, rasam and curd rice. While Ravindrakumar makes breakfast, his wife cooks lunch and dinner. He has secured permission from the food safety department and has a team of volunteers helping them daily. 

Five sacks of rice (each sack consists of 25 kg)and 25 kg of kurnai rice are used daily to make the food. The trust has a couple of regular contributors who sponsor each day’s meals. It costs almost Rs 20,000 daily. They also get funds on people’s birthdays, anniversaries and other special occasions. People eating
there are served on steel plates and the person who eats must wash the plate and keep it back. For people who want to take the food home, they must get their own utensils.

“My husband has been in hospital for a week. The food served by Ravindrakumar is a blessing for us. It is healthy and good to give my husband, too,” said Prema, a patient’s wife.

Seeing the service in Tiruchy, Ravindrakumar was approached by people in Pudukkottai. “My father believed in serving the needy. I am just continuing his path. There is nothing as satisfying as filling someone’s stomach and seeing the happiness on their face. God can be seen in their eyes,” said Ravindrakumar, who took VRS from Railways.


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