Though there was hardly any sign of celebration of Ugadi in Chittoor town on Wednesday under the shadow of COVID-19 lockdown, the Chittoor police swung into action to celebrate the auspicious occasion in a unique way – caring the hungry and have-not’s caught in lockdown effect at public places.
After the announcement of 21-day nation-wide lockdown, Superintendent of Police S. Senthil Kumar hit upon a humanitarian idea to help the destitute and elderly moving in public places to overcome the pangs of hunger on the Ugadi festival. It was immediately put into action.
The voluntary organisations, operating old age homes and doing charity works, were contacted, seeking their cooperation for the noble cause. In Chittoor, the Amma Vodi ashram and some youth of Lalu Gardens locality could prepare food packets of sambar rice, pulihora, and curd rice for distribution to about 500 persons. As Ugadi special, vada and sweet were added to the food.
Deputy SP (Chittoor) K. Eeshwar Reddy and Chittoor II-Town Circle Inspector P. Yugandar launched the distribution at noon at the new APSRTC bus station, private bus station, surroundings of railway station and at corners of some of the arterial junctions in Chittoor.
The police personnel and volunteers could spot the sick and destitute persons and elderly under helpless conditions and distributed food packets and water sachets to them. The beneficiaries, several of whom have been hungry since a couple of days, were overwhelmed at the gesture.
At Puttur, Deputy SP D. Muralidhar and his team prepared food packets for about 300 persons and distributed them to the destitute and elderly at public places.
Apart from Puttur, the gesture covered the target group in Nagari, Karveti Nagaram, Nindra, and Satyavedu circles. Similar activity from the police in cooperation with the public groups was conducted at Palamaner and Madanapalle sub-divisions.
Activity to continue
Meanwhile, the SP sought the police at their respective divisions to consider making arrangements to provide safe shelter to the destitute and elderly stranded at public places in view of the lockdown. The SP said that the police would continue distribution of food packets to the needy till the corona threat subsides.