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It’s “Manna From Heaven” For These ‘FANI’-Hit Denizens In Odisha’s Capital City


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09 May 2019

Snigdha Chandan Das


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Bhubaneswar: It is all evident from the noble deeds of these two private organizations of Odisha’s capital city evincing loud and clear that they have well realized “Service to Mankind is Service to God”, “A Friend in Need is a Friend Indeed” as well as “Money Comes and Goes, Morality Comes and Grows.”

While ‘Roti, Kapda & Makan’ (food, clothing and shelter) are the basic needs of a human being, one needs minimum two square meals a day for survival. 

When natural disaster despoils these all, the affected or evacuated are provided relief in shape of free food first. Be it the haves or have-nots.

Like other cyclone-affected areas, the capital city of Odisha is also reeling under acute power disruptions since May 3 (Cyclone FANI landfall day) till date, let alone normal water supply. 

Even though restoration work is going on in a war-footing, complete normalcy is still elusive. 

At such a crucial juncture, Janpath-based religious citadel 'Gurudwara Guru Sabha' and even a restaurant named 'Babu Moshai' in Gopabandhu Marg area here in the smart city have suo motu turned to be Good Samaritans by feeding the hungry lot.  

OMMCOM NEWS team captured such sacrosanct moments and tried to elicit the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings of both the benevolent service providers and the immensely pleased beneficiaries. 

Pouring out his reactions, one student beneficiary said, “We came here for the first time. We had heard about it three days back, but turned up today. No electricity, unable to prepare our studies and our daily food supplier has stopped service.”

A self-reliant woman slum-dweller rued, “Tree has fallen on our house. No chance of cooking. We had no idea about the service being provided here. Came to know yesterday and started availing the service. Our children are having ‘chuda’, ‘mudhi’ (flattened and parched rice stuff) at home. No electricity nor water supply. Collecting some water from the adhoc tanker supply. As we eke our living daily, I have to venture out and having my meal here. Undone, helpless.”

A youth in the same distress expressed, “Suffering a lot due to lack of power supply and water. When came to know about the free food service here, availing it. What to do? Here there is very good arrangement and the people in trouble are being benefitted here.”

Another gentleman stated, “No line (electricity supply) and no water supply at home. We are being benefitted here. Unable to cook at home. Hence, having the food here. I had had here food day before yesterday and also having today.”

Same was the reaction of another beneficiary.   

Gurudwara Guru Sabha head Satpal Singh informed, “This ‘langar’ (community kitchen service) has started since May 4 night. We are making arrangements of lunch for 2000 persons and dinner for 2000 persons twice a day. It is being cooked here in our Gurudwara.”

“Food for the International relief team Khalsa Aid and United 6 Forum, both American based and unit at Hyderabad, is also being cooked here at our Gurudwara. They are also serving it to 2000-3000 persons in Puri. For instance, Baliapanda and at a slum near Mayfair, yesterday they had taken food from here to Brahmagiri, today going to Satpada as per the direction of the Collector Sahib.”

Babu Moshai restaurant owner B. Mohan Padhi said, “We had opened our restaurant lighting candle since the cyclone landfall evening. We served the people with food. Gradually we are increasing our quota. While on the day one served food to 500 persons, day before yesterday it was for 1200 persons and today it is for 2000 persons. Our menu is ‘Arna’ (rice), ‘Dalma’ (special dal) and ‘Khatta’ (tasty sour).”

He explained, “We aren’t making purchasings here from Bhubaneswar due to the skyrocketing rates. We are importing from outside like Berhampur, Balasore, where the vegetables and other food items are cheap. We have also apprised our regular vendors that we are doing this as an act of charity for the cyclone. Hence, our suppliers are not charging more rates, rather supplying us with the usual normal rates.” 

In his reactions the pious restaurant owner said, “Immensely pleased doing this deed. At least we receive blessings at the end of day. Minting money always is meaningless. Elderly persons, women and children come over here. Most of them bless us after relishing the food. It really gives us great pleasure and peace.”  

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B. Mohan Padhi, Owner, Babu Moshai Restaurant

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Satpal Singh, Head Of Gurudwara Guru Sabha

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Beneficiaries