TIRUCHY: One of the reasons for people stepping out during the lockdown is to buy vegetables, fruits, groceries, medicines and other essential items. A gated community in Tiruchy's Karumandapam has found the perfect solution to this, by bringing all vendors selling essentials to their doorstep. The move has been orchestrated by the welfare association of the gated community.
"We all panicked during the first two days of the lockdown. We did not know what to do and certainly did not want to step out. Our society has 103 houses and over 70 senior citizens, who would not be able to go out. Luckily, two vegetable vendors came and enquired if they could provide supplies," said Rajesh, treasurer, Rohini Gateway Owners Welfare Association.
After 'appointing' the two vegetable vendors, the association started searching for others. They zeroed in on three vendors who supply fruits and vegetables on a daily basis. Local farmers also get their daily produce and supply them. "We are able to provide a livelihood to farmers, too. We have cucumber, spinach and banana farmers delivering directly to us. We hope to continue this post-lockdown," said a resident.
Coordination is done through a WhatsApp group. Every evening, the association informs residents about vendors who would be coming the next day. Based on the orders, the vendors are informed about the quantity. After vegetables and fruits, groceries were ordered from Reliance and FSM. Even vendors selling fish, mutton and chicken started coming as the lockdown extended. People's sweet tooth was also catered to, with sweet shops coming and delivering at the gate.
"We ensure safety. Any vendor who comes in must wear a mask and use a sanitiser at the gate. Residents who want to buy form a line maintaining social distancing and get it from the vendor. We even ordered medicines and masks," said Rajesh. There are four to five doctor residents who suggest medicines. The senior citizens are very happy with the service and want it to be continued till June, even beyond the lockdown. While this may be a common occurrence in metros, in Tiruchy, this is one of the very
few societies to do this.