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COVID-19 Warriors: Meet Mumbai’s Mother-Son Duo Who Have Been Feeding Hundreds Of Needy People Daily Amid The Pandemic

Through their tiffin service, Mumbai-based Heena Mandavia and her son Harsh have served over 27,000 homecooked meals to the poor and homeless amid the COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19 Warriors: Meet Mumbai’s Mother-Son Duo Who Have Been Feeding Hundreds Of Needy People Daily Amid The Pandemic

New Delhi: A health crisis that has caused immense economic distress due to lockdowns, the COVID-19 pandemic has proved to be a threat to life and livelihood. In these difficult times, 49-year-old Heena Mandavia and her 26-year-old son Harsh have been serving homecooked meals free of cost to the poor and needy in Mumbai.

Ms Mandavia started a tiffin service, ‘Harsh Thali And Parathas’ in 1999 after her husband died in a car accident. Last year, when the pandemic hit, this mother-son duo converted their tiffin delivery kitchen into a ‘feed the needy’ service. They started feeding the hungry during the first lockdown and during the second wave of the pandemic also they continued to cook tirelessly and feed the hungry. Ms Mandavia said,

I started a tiffin service in 1999, my son was six years old and at that time, I did not have grains, vegetables or even utensils for providing people a tiffin. But I had to do something for my and my son’s survival and so with the help of my neighbours and friends I managed to start my business. Many strangers had also helped to reach the level where I am today. Because of this I always wanted to do something for the society. Always wanted to give back.

Also Read: Actor Jacqueline Fernandez Distributes Meals To The Needy In Mumbai Amid COVID-19 Crisis

Talking about the journey of their ‘Feed the Needy’ initiative, Harsh said that there is always some worry about getting infected as they are required to go out to serve people but knowing that a lot of people need their help motivates them to keep their fears aside and do their duty. He shared that they started feeding people for free after one of their regular customers inspired them by asking them to feed 100 people on his behalf. He said,

In the month of May last year, I got a call from our regular customer who told me that he wants to feed 100 poor people. But he didn’t want to step out because of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, he asked us if we can go out and feed them. That was the first day when we went out and fed the people outside a Gurudwara in Malad. On the same evening, I put up an appreciation post on social media along with pictures and videos of the food donation drive. That connected us with the people online and people started donating money from all over. After that we have not looked back and every day tirelessly, we cook and serve over 100 meals.

Ms Mandavia and her son have served more than 27,000 meals in the past 13 months that has covered more than thousands of poor people including those living in slums, old age homes, orphanages. Harsh added,

We also try catering to people from different segments of the society like watchmen, rickshaw drivers, garbage collectors among others who couldn’t get food while working during the daytime.

According to Ms Mandavia, the initiative also aims to provide employment to a few women who lost their jobs during the pandemic. She said,

That was a big thing for me, because I have been through the same situation in my life. A lot of people helped me to reach the level that I am at today. So, I thought I want to help some ladies too.

Also Read: Anupam Kher Donates Oxygen Concentrators, Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure Machines To Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation For COVID Crisis

Poonam Patil who is a teacher and her husband, a make-up artist by profession lost their jobs due to the pandemic. For many days they faced financial problems. Ms Patil was then employed by Ms Mandavia to help out in cooking for her initiative. Ms Patil said,

Because of the pandemic, we lost our jobs and there was no source of income. Thanks to Heena ji’s initiative, we are able to get some work and earn some income and are able to do our bit in helping the needy during the difficult times.

According to Harsh, the initiative has been receiving financial support from all across the globe. He said that to help them continue and expand their food donation drive, over Rs 27 lakh has been raised so far through social media. He said,

The encouragement that we have been receiving helped us feed the poor and spread smiles even during challenging times like these.

Also Read: COVID Warriors: Mumbai Doctor Couple Starts ‘Meds For More’, Collects Over 125 Kgs Of Unused COVID Medicines

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

22,70,55,138Cases
18,97,86,461Active
3,25,98,424Recovered
46,70,253Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 195 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 22,70,55,138 and 46,70,253 have died; 18,97,86,461 are active cases and 3,25,98,424 have recovered as on September 17, 2021 at 5:36 am.

India

3,33,81,728 34,403Cases
3,39,0563,867Active
3,25,98,424 37,950Recovered
4,44,248 320Deaths
In India, there are 3,33,81,728 confirmed cases including 4,44,248 deaths. The number of active cases is 3,39,056 and 3,25,98,424 have recovered as on September 17, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

65,11,525 3,595

52,893 310

63,20,310 3,240

1,38,322 45

Kerala

44,46,228 22,182

1,86,754 4,559

42,36,309 26,563

23,165 178

Karnataka

29,65,191 1,108

16,202 282

29,11,434 808

37,555 18

Tamil Nadu

26,40,361 1,693

16,756 120

25,88,334 1,548

35,271 25

Andhra Pradesh

20,34,786 1,367

14,708 105

20,06,034 1,248

14,044 14

Uttar Pradesh

17,09,628 23

193 11

16,86,549 11

22,886 1

West Bengal

15,59,567 707

8,025 25

15,32,922 725

18,620 7

Delhi

14,38,373 28

409 5

14,12,880 22

25,084 1

Odisha

10,18,298 580

5,335 105

10,04,845 681

8,118 4

Chhattisgarh

10,04,988 31

352 2

9,91,077 29

13,559

Rajasthan

9,54,230 4

103 1

9,45,173 5

8,954

Gujarat

8,25,677 22

149 0

8,15,446 22

10,082

Madhya Pradesh

7,92,374 7

119 5

7,81,738 12

10,517

Haryana

7,70,697 9

327 8

7,60,562 17

9,808

Bihar

7,25,864 12

72 6

7,16,134 6

9,658

Telangana

6,62,785 259

5,282 43

6,53,603 301

3,900 1

Punjab

6,01,180 30

314 11

5,84,399 38

16,467 3

Assam

5,97,074 468

5,381 15

5,85,914 479

5,779 4

Jharkhand

3,48,102 6

102 8

3,42,867 14

5,133

Uttarakhand

3,43,330 20

284 12

3,35,657 32

7,389

Jammu And Kashmir

3,27,466 170

1,421 72

3,21,630 98

4,415

Himachal Pradesh

2,16,430 127

1,568 82

2,11,215 206

3,647 3

Goa

1,75,183 95

699 1

1,71,195 96

3,289

Puducherry

1,25,170 107

963 63

1,22,380 42

1,827 2

Manipur

1,17,913 216

2,614 7

1,13,478 219

1,821 4

Tripura

83,787 31

427 26

82,553 56

807 1

Meghalaya

78,958 229

1,804 140

75,784 86

1,370 3

Mizoram

76,591 1,121

13,888 85

62,449 1,202

254 4

Chandigarh

65,168 4

31 2

64,319 2

818

Arunachal Pradesh

53,990 47

536 9

53,183 56

271

Sikkim

30,802 64

775 28

29,648 36

379

Nagaland

30,763 32

505 14

29,610 44

648 2

Ladakh

20,631 6

41 1

20,383 5

207

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,670

5 0

10,661

4

Lakshadweep

10,353

4 0

10,298

51

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,595 3

15 2

7,451 1

129

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