Despite 70 years of Independence, India has not solved its hunger problem, and a substantial part of the population continues to be affected by it.
According to the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2017 report, over 19.07 crore people in India are undernourished, and that is about 14.5 percent of the entire global population.
To make sure that no one goes hungry in the city anymore, the district administration of Kochi has come up with a free meal initiative under which people who cannot afford to buy food can collect coupons from designated counters in the city and exchange it to avail a meal at select hotels.
Conceived by K Mohammed Y Safirulla, the District Collector of Kochi, the ‘Numma Oonu’ initiative will be officially launched on Republic Day by AC Moideen, Minister of State for Industries, Sports & Youth Affairs.
The initiative has been envisioned in collaboration with Petronet LNG Foundation and Kerala Hotel and Restaurant Association Ernakulam District Committee and is expected to start its operations on February 1.
“We will set up ‘Numma Oonu’ counters at Ernakulam Collectorate and Ernakulam South railway station. Those who need food should collect the coupons from these counters and exchange them at the mentioned hotels. The Hotel and Restaurant Association has already identified four hotels each at Kakkanad and Ernakulam South for the scheme,” said Safirulla.
In Kakkanad, the free meals will be served at Alakapuri Hotel near the Collectorate, along with Liba, Ayodhya and Galaxy Hotels at Vazhakkala. In Ernakulam South, one can avail the service at Aryas, Alfala, Arya Bhavan and Mughal hotels. One can redeem the coupons from any of these hotels that have registered themselves with the scheme.
We hope that more cities and districts follow similar models that can help beat hunger and ensure that no one under their jurisdiction sleeps on a hungry stomach.