19-year-old Mohd Sujathullah is already doing great things. He’s changing people’s lives, one meal at a time. The post-graduate student of Sultan Ul Uloom College of Pharmacy has been serving meals to the needy at Niloufer Children’s Hospital and Koti Maternity Hospital for the past two years.
Talking about the incident that opened his eyes to the plight of the city’s impoverished and prompted him to take action, he says, “In 2016, I promised God that I would distribute ten food packets to the needy if I cleared my exams. And much to my delight, I did! When I went out to distribute food, a huge crowd gathered around me, but I only had a few packets of food. It was then that I realised what a big problem it was, and I decided to do something for the needy.”
Sujathullah started off by distributing dinner, drinking water, and blankets items that he bought using his pocket money at winter and medical camps. Soon, his passion took the form of a foundation called Humanity First.
Not surprisingly, his decision to spend almost all of his money on serving the poor shocked his family. “My family asked me to complete my education, find a job, get married, and then donate money after my retirement. But I explained to them how lucky I was to have been born in a stable family, and I managed to convince them. Now, they bear 40 per cent of the cost of my activities,” he says, adding, “I distribute breakfast at Niloufer Hospital from 8.30 am to 9 am. Recently, I’ve started going to Koti Maternity Hospital as well. I’m there from 8 am to 8.30 am. I directly go to college.”
The student has chosen Niloufer Hospital because it’s on his way to college and because it is a large hospital with several wards of people that he can serve. Every day, Sujathullah feeds 500 people. Today is his 600th day.
“I serve high-quality upma made with pure ghee and chutney. A hotel at Padmarao Nagar prepares the breakfast for 1,000 people at a subsidised price. On an average, I pay the hotel Rs 3,500 for about 20 kilos of food. Transport and disposable spoons and bowls cost me another Rs 500,” he says.
As today happens to be Id, Sujathullah has something special planned. “Apart from Upma, I am also going to be serving sheer khurma (milk with dry dates). I have placed an order for the vermicelli for 800 people,” he beams. This youngster’s efforts bring smiles to the faces of hundreds of people every morning. Recently, former cricketer V.V.S. Laxman tweeted about his work. But Sujathullah says that there’s a long way to go, and a lot more to do. “I am thankful for the appreciation, but I want to expand my services to all government hospitals,” he says....