29 March 2020
New Delhi: With thousands of migrants left stranded in cities across the country in the wake of the 21-day nationwide lockdown to stop spread of novel coronavirus, the Railways on Sunday said it served lunch to over 11,000 people across India.
The Railway Ministry said that it had decided to provide bulk cooked food along with paper plates to the needy from locations where they have base kitchens of IRCTC.
The Indian Rail Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has over 25 base kitchens in zones of Vijaywada, Ahmedabad, Mumbai Central, Khurdha Road, Balasore, New Delhi, Paharganj, Prayagraj, Jhansi, Kanpur, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus in Mumbai, Pune, Sholapur, Bhusawal, Itarsi, Bangalore, Hubbali, Tiruanantpuram, Chengalpattu, Katpadi, Mangalore, Sealdah, Howrah, Rajendranagar and Katihar.
The IRCTC supplied 11,030 meals to migrant labours, old-age homes and other needy people across the country.
In Delhi, lunch was handed out to over 5,030 persons, 2,000 people in Bengaluru, 770 packets in Hubli, 1,500 packets in Bombay Central, 500 packets in Howrah and Sealdah, 400 packets in Tata and Patna, 300 packets in Ranchi and 200 food packets in Kathiar.
The ministry said that the General Managers and DRMs of concerned Zones and Divisions were expected to provide their inputs and enhance the outreach of these efforts.
The distribution of food was done by the Railway Protection Force (RPF) and other personnel.
The ministry said that railways was geared up to provide food to more needy people.
The railways has suspended the passenger, mail and express train servoices from March 24 to April 14. Only freight train services are operational to ensure the supply of the essential items across the country.
The railways has stopped production at its manufacturing units and instead engaged in the manufacture of sanitisers, medical beds, cots, tools, masks, aprons and IV stands to meet the demand.