Food for the distraught

Bengaluru’s youngsters were some of the largest group of volunteers to make their way to Chennai to help assist in relief work
While Chennai has been grappling to stay afloat, it’s been heartwarming to see how neighbouring cities have stepped up and pitched in for those affected by the deluge and subsequent floods.
Bengaluru’s youngsters were some of the largest group of volunteers to make their way to Chennai to help assist in relief work. Among them was Amrita Samant, a dashing young lady who is a baby photographer by profession. “I was actually in Chennai when the rains and floods started. I came here for my baby photography shoots which are all cancelled. I stayed back to help out. I will return once everything is back to normal,” shares Samant, whose own house in Chennai was also evacuated after it got flooded. Talking about her work there, she says that food is one of the main concerns at the moment. “I’ve only been doing food distribution. Honestly, it’s been heart-wrenching seeing the number of low-income groups sitting on the roads and living out of stairways of random buildings. The worst sights were seeing all the huts on the banks of the Cooum submerged underwater. At the same time, I’ve been working with people I’ve never met before who are going all out of their way offline and online to help with relief work, which restores enormous amount of faith,” she reveals.
Another youngster, Manian PR a short film maker and his group of film maker friends hired a truck, filled it with supplies and drove to Chennai two days ago. Now back in Bengaluru after emptying out the truck, they are currently gearing up for the second round. Talking about the ground reality in the city, Manian shares that while the water has drained from a majority of the areas, waterlogging continues to be a problem in quite a few places. “People are still to return home and are taking shelter in camps. There is no power supply in most places and with the fear of water seeping into fuel, petrol stations have been advised not to sell fuel. Also, there is no mobile communication whatsoever,” he says.
Pavitra Satish, an airhostess with an airline based in Bengaluru too has been in Chennai during the rains and volunteering with food and other supplies. “It’s quite horrible to see people suffer so much. We really are powerless in the face of nature’s wrath. It has been better today and the water has been draining but in a few places, there is water four to five feet deep. The rivers and lakes have been contaminated with sewage water so drinking water continues to be a huge problem,” shares Satish.
If the latest forecasts are anything to be believed, the rains are going to let up going forward. Here’s hoping the city gets back on its feet at the earliest.

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( Source : deccan chronicle )
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