One of the most prominent issues that arose nationwide during this lockdown was the issue of the migrant labourers who had become destitute overnight for no fault of their own.
During this pandemic, while many were stuck at home, thousands were forced to lay on the streets with nowhere to go and no food to eat. One of the most prominent issues that arose nationwide during this lockdown was the issue of the migrant labourers who had become destitute overnight for no fault of their own. In such times many brave souls had stepped out of their safety zones to help these in need. Harmony Foundation wishes to honour heroes – resolute men and women – who led the city of Mumbai in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Harmony Foundation honoured heroes who helped ease sufferings of migrants and lesser fortunate during COVID-19 lockdown.
The foundation honoured Shri. Sanjay Pandey, DG Home Guards, who focused on arranging for shelter for migrant workers across the city as the government had banned inter-state travel. He along with the help of some like-minded individuals constructed the Versova Camp at the Home Guards grounds as a shelter to migrants and stranded foreigners. This shelter was the first of it’s kind and housed 300 individuals on any given day who were given nutrition and medical assistance for the duration of their stay until they were allowed to go back home. In order to ensure that the circumstances did not weigh them down, he also ensured that the migrants had some form of entertainment including screening of movies in the evenings while ensuring social distancing norms were followed.
The foundation also honoured actor Sonu Sood for his contribution in helping distressed migrants during the lockdown. The press release by the foundation said, “As the lockdown prolonged and the government lifted the interstate travel ban, it was Bollywood actor, Mr Sonu Sood who took it upon himself to aid these migrant workers find their way home. He arranged for over 20 buses to take migrants to states like Karnataka, Bihar, and UP and finally even a chartered flight to fly them. Apart from this, he also donated 1,500 PPE kits and other necessities to doctors across Punjab as they stood in the frontlines to battle coronavirus cases.”
81-year-old Sardar Karnail Singh Khaira who has fed over 2 million migrants ever since the lockdown began was honoured by the foundation as well. He is the head of the Dera Kar Seva Gurudwara Langar which is located on the National Highway 7 in Yavatmal District. He along with his team have continued to serve piping hot meals around the clock for migrant travellers. If this act alone is not enough, the langar had fed over 250 dogs and other animals in the regions.
Railway officer Khushroo Poacha in Nagpur was also honoured by the foundation. Poacha has managed to feed around 60,000 families across India without taking a penny for himself. He deployed through social media platforms like Whatsapp and his websites like www.sevakitchen.org. In this manner, Mr Poacha manages a large group of centres that continue to provide for the needy in states like Hyderabad, Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Delhi.
Other than this, the Harmony Foundation awarded certificates to organisations and individuals across the nations who worked over and above their calling as our nation continues with the battle against the pandemic.
“What we encountered in the last 4 months was not normal, and what these brave individuals did during these past 4 months was not normal either. We at Harmony Foundation are grateful for their compassion and dedication as it reaffirms our faith in humanity,” said Dr Mathai, Founder Chairman of Harmony Foundation and Former Vice-Chairman of Minorities Commission.