Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was first identified in China in December 2019. Within a few months, the disease spread globally, resulting in the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. In India, the outbreak of the disease occurred in March and, to contain the spread of this severely infectious disease, the Government of India declared a 21-day countrywide lockdown on 24 March. This and other safety measures caused severe disruption to the normal lives of millions of people—the poor and daily-wage workers bearing the brunt of the situation.
Responding to the sufferings of common people, the Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission launched relief operations through their branch centres in India and a few other countries. The relief operations are mainly in the form of distribution of cooked food and groceries, and hygiene/protection kits (with face masks, hand sanitizer bottles, etc) and health awareness campaigns.
Details of relief operations conducted until the filing of this Bulletin are given below. Since this is an evolving crisis, and more reports of relief work are pouring in, further details will be given in the future bulletins.
(a) Kadapa centre distributed 600 breakfast packets among beggars and differently-abled persons in Kadapa district from 29 to 31 March.
(b) Vijayawada centre distributed 1000 masks, 200 gloves and ration kits (each kit containing 2.5 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 1 kg flour, 1 kg potatoes, 1 kg onions, 250 gram salt and 100 gram spices) among 262 persons in Guntur district on 26 and 30 March.
(a) Guwahati centre distributed 172 kg rice, 35 kg dal, 69 kg potatoes, 44 kg salt, 44 hand sanitizer bottles and 100 face masks among 44 families in Guwahati on 29 March.
(b) Karimganj centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 2 kg potatoes, 1 kg salt, 1 packet of biscuit and 1 bar of soap) among 270 families in Karimganj district on 31 March.
(a) Limbdi centre conducted an awareness campaign and distributed 100 face masks and ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg flour, 1 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 1 kg edible oil, 1 kg potatoes, 500 gram onions, 1 kg jaggery, 1 kg sugar and 200 gram tea leaves) to 50 families, and food packets to 1513 people from 28 to 30 March.
(b) Rajkot centre distributed 900 kg rice, 540 kg flour, 180 kg dal, 180 litres edible oil, 360 kg potatoes, 360 kg onions, 180 kg sugar, 9 kg assorted spices, 45 kg tea leaves, 180 packets of biscuits and 180 bars of soap among 180 families in Rajkot district on 30 March.
(c) Vadodara centre distributed 200 food packets and 1000 packets of farsan and biscuits on 31 March.
(a) Jamshedpur centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 2 kg potatoes, 500 gram salt, 1 bar of soap and 1 packet of soap powder) among 100 families in Jamshedpur district on 31 March.
(b) Ranchi Morabadi centre distributed 2000 leaflets to spread awareness about the coronavirus on 25 March.
(a) Mangaluru centre is coordinating with the City Corporation in conducting awareness drives about the coronavirus.
(b) Mysuru centre served 1000 plates of cooked food to the needy from 26 to 31 March.
(c) Ponnampet centre served 440 plates of cooked food to poor people from 29 to 31 March. Further, the centre’s hospital has set up two wards exclusively for coronavirus patients.
(d) Shivanahalli centre is conducting awareness campaigns among the villagers in and around Shivanahalli. The centre served 20,000 plates of cooked food to 2500 local daily wagers from 27 to 30 March.
(a) Haripad centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg dal and 1 kg salt) among 275 families in Alappuzha district on 29 March.
(b) Kalady centre distributed 1400 kg rice, 278 kg dal, 85 kg potatoes, 85 kg onions, 50 kg salt, 34 kg assorted spices, 120 litres of edible oil, 100 bars of soap, 10 kg washing powder and 10 litres of soap solution among affected people on 31 March.
(c) Kayamkulam centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 2 kg rice, 1 kg flour, 1 kg dal, 1 kg onions and 1 kg of salt) among 250 families on 29 March.
(d) Koyilandy centre distributed 200 kg rice, 40 kg flour, 80 kg dal, 4 kg spices, 10 kg tea leaves and 40 kg sugar among 40 families on 31 March, and 150 gloves, 150 hand sanitizer bottles and 150 face masks among police personnel.
(e) Kozhikode centre is providing temporary board and lodging facilities to 21 stranded daily wagers from 26 March.
(f) Pala centre distributed 60 bars of soap, 60 packets of detergent powder, 60 bottles of hair oil, 180 packets of biscuits and 60 towels among 60 families of a Harijan colony in Kottayam district on 30 March.
(g) Thiruvananthapuram centre set up an outpatient clinic in its hospital for suspected cases.
(a) Mumbai centre served 2975 plates of cooked food and distributed 2975 water bottles from 28 to 30 March.
(b) Pune centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 4 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 1.5 kg potatoes, 1 kg sugar, 500 gram edible oil and 3 kg firewood) among 32 families in Pune from 24 to 26 March. The centre is also serving cooked food among 70 daily wagers in Kolhapur district from 29 March.
Sohra (Cherrapunjee) centre supplied ration kits (each kit containing 25 kg rice and 5 kg dal) to the doorsteps of 1068 families living in distant places. The centre distributed 2000 face masks, essential medicines to 852 patients, pamphlets and banners, and arranged transportation of patients from villages to health centres from 25 to 30 March.
Kothar centre distributed 900 hand sanitizer bottles among villagers from 21 to 23 March.
(a) Chennai Math served 1500 plates of cooked food at Meyyur village from 27 to 31 March, distributed 1000 face masks, 500 hand gloves and 2000 packets of biscuits among the sanitary workers of Chennai Corporation from 25 to 28 March and ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg dal, assorted spices and 500 gram sugar) among 170 families in Thanjavur district from 27 to 31 March.
(b) Chennai Students’ Home distributed ration kits (each kit containing 1 kg rice, 2 kg semolina, 2 kg sugar, 4 kg dal, 1 litre edible oil, 1 kg salt and 30 gram assorted spices) among 317 families of daily wagers and 310 face masks, 3 litres of hand sanitizer and 1 thermal scanner to a government hospital in Thiruvallur district on 30 and 31 March.
(c) Coimbatore Math served 550 plates of cooked food to municipality workers from 27 to 30 March and tea and biscuits to police personnel in Coimbatore on 30 March.
(d) Coimbatore Mission centre conducted awareness campaigns on health and law & order in 4 panchayat areas on 25 March, distributed 1075 kg rice and 215 kg dal among 215 families and 320 food packets to roadside dwellers etc in Coimbatore district on 31 March.
(e) Kanchipuram centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 500 gram flour, 500 gram semolina, 1.5 kg dal, 1 kg edible oil, 100 gram vermicelli, 850 gram assorted spices, 25 ml coconut oil, 1 bar of bathing soap and 2 bars of washing soap) among 50 auto-rickshaw drivers on 28 March and provided noon meals to 80 patient attendees in a cancer hospital from 28 to 31 March.
(f) Nattarampalli centre distributed 693 kg rice, 46 kg dal, 23 litres edible oil, 5 kg sambar powder and 46 kg salt among 46 families on 24 March.
(g) Salem centre distributed 1400 hand gloves to sanitary workers on 28 and 29 March. The centre is also serving lunch to 100 municipality workers from 27 March.
Kailashahar centre conducted health awareness campaigns among tea estate workers in Unakoti district and distributed 218 bars of soap and 218 bottles of liquid soap among them on 16 March.
(a) Lucknow centre is distributing ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg flour, 5 kg rice, 2 kg dal, 2 kg potatoes, 1 litre edible oil, 1 kg salt, 50 gram coconut oil and 2 bars of soap) among the poor and needy in Lucknow and Ayodhya from 25 March.
(b) Vrindaban centre served 1800 plates of cooked food to the poor and needy from 27 to 30 March. Further, the centre’s hospital has set up a clinic for suspected cases.
(a) Asansol centre distributed 125 ration kits (each kit containing rice, flour, potatoes, dal, edible oil, packets of biscuits and bars of soap) among 150 people at a leprosy colony in Burnpur on 30 March.
(b) Baghbazar centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 1 kg soybeans, 3 kg potatoes and 500 gram milk powder) among 2000 families in Baghbazar on 27 and 28 March.
(c) Bamunmura centre distributed 1100 kg rice, 240 kg dal, 200 kg potatoes, 7 kg soybeans and 240 bars of soap among 247 families on 31 March.
(d) Bankura centre served cooked food to 95 people and distributed 60 kg rice, 15 kg dal, 40 kg potatoes, 5 kg onions, 1 kg soybeans, 15 kg salt, 15 kg chira, 15 kg sugar and 30 bars of soap among 65 persons in Bankura district from 27 to 30 March.
(e) Baranagar Mission centre distributed 2567 face masks, 2414 bars of soap and 153 hand sanitizer bottles among sanitary workers of the Baranagar and Kamarhati Municipalities in North 24 Parganas district on 28 and 29 March.
(f) Belgharia centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg flour, 1 kg dal, 5 kg potatoes, 2 kg onions, 1 litre edible oil, 1 packet of biscuits, 1 kg sugar and 1 bar of soap) among 200 families in Belgharia on 31 March.
(g) Darjeeling centre distributed 50 kg rice, assorted vegetables and sanitary items among 5 families in Darjeeling district in March.
(h) Jhargram centre conducted COVID-19 awareness camps on 14 & 15 March for school children and distributed ration kits (each kit containing 3 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 2 kg potatoes, 100 gram turmeric powder, 250 gram milk powder and 2 packets of biscuits) among 1134 families in Jhargram district from 23 to 31 March.
(i) Kasundia centre, Howrah, distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 3 kg potatoes and 1 kg dal) among 350 families in Howrah from 28 to 31 March.
(j) Kathamrita Bhavan, Kolkata, distributed 540 kg rice, 270 kg flour, 220 kg dal, 270 kg potatoes and 44 kg soybeans among 270 families from 28 to 31 March.
(k) Malda centre distributed 101 ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 1 kg flour, 1 kg dal, 500 gram soybeans, 1 kg salt, 1 litre edible oil and 1 bar of soap), 101 shirts, 101 trousers and 101 face masks among needy families on 30 March.
(l) Narendrapur centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 2 kg dal and 3 kg potatoes) among 1200 families in neighbouring areas on 30 and 31 March.
(m) Ramharipur centre is distributing 50 litres of milk among 200 poor children from 24 March onwards.
(n) Saradapitha held a rally and campaigned to raise awareness about the coronavirus pandemic in and around Belur on 16 and 23 March. The centre also distributed 3710 kg rice, 985 kg dal, 1970 kg potatoes, 492 kg salt, 1855 litres edible oil, 1970 packets of biscuits, 4091 bars of soap, 6212 face masks and 985 hand sanitizer bottles among 1136 families in Howrah district from 23 to 31 March.
(o) Sargachhi centre distributed 5000 bars of soap among the inmates of Berhampur Correctional Home, 300 kg rice among 30 old persons, milk to 100 children and face masks, hand wash and sanitizer bottles to the local government authorities from 25 to 29 March.
(a) Bagerhat centre conducted health awareness campaigns and distributed ration kits (each kit containing 2 kg rice, 1 kg dal, 500 gm salt and edible oil), bars of soap and face masks among 60 families in Bagerhat district on 28 and 29 March.
(b) Chandpur centre distributed ration kits (each kit containing 5 kg rice, 3 kg potatoes, 1 kg dal, 1 kg salt, 500 ml edible oil and 2 bars of soap) among 200 families in the surrounding areas in March.
(c) Mymensingh centre conducted awareness campaigns and distributed face masks, hand wash and bars of soap in March.
Durban centre distributed 1100 hygiene kits (each kit containing a hand sanitizer bottle, 3 bars of soap, a bottle of bleach and a pamphlet on coronavirus) to the needy in the last week of March.