The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) today launched a pilot center of a scheme which would provide subsidized hot and hygienic meals to the poor for Rs 5 at Nampally Sarai here. GHMC, which plans to feed 15,000 people a day, will set up 50 such centres, each equipped to serve 300 persons. The actual cost of the meal would be Rs 20. GHMC will bear the balance cost. To start with, GHMC has partnered with Akshaya Patra Foundation, run by Hare Krishna Movement, which will prepare the food.
The vegetarian meal of rice, dal/sambar, sabji and pickle shall be served on first-come-first-serve basis in paper plates during 12 noon to 1 pm. The civic body has earmarked Rs 11 crore for this in its 2014-15 budget.
GHMC commissioner Somesh Kumar said that intended beneficiaries were the migrant workers who cannot pay Rs 40-50 that a meal costs in hotels.
I have seen many poor people at labour addas. I come from such a social background and worked with NGOs and I felt this is an opportune time, the commissioner said when asked about the inspiration for the scheme.
Collaboration with Akshaya Patra Foundation:
As the trial run started at Nampally Sarai in collaboration with Akshaya Patra Foundation, whether it will be a single implementing agency which will prepare the food or multiple agencies will be decided in future. Other pilot centres will come up at Koti, Chintalbasthi and Mehdipatnam, Kumar said, adding, we will study and try to understand the issues that crop up, before feeding 15,000 people.
GHMC launches Re.1 Breakfast:
As Rs.5 per meal project was intended to help the lower and under privileged sections of the society thus it was a huge success and people accolade the government for launching these kinds of schemes for the welfare of the people.
After tasting success with the concept of Rs.5 meal scheme in the city, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) has now planned to stir a new recipe to offer breakfast at Re.1. For poor
Conceived by the Mayor, Mohammed Majid Hussain, the Re.1 breakfast concept is being planned to come up with a choice of idli, upma, poori or dosa at centres close to slums, labour addas, near hospitals, weaker section colonies and other such places where the poorer sections could be catered.
The idea takes off from the success of the Rs.5 meal, which starting as pilot project with one centre at Nampally Sarai has been spread to other centres, including Gudimalkapur, Mehdipatnam, Moosapet, Charminar, Secunderabad Clock Tower and L.B. Nagar. A total of 50 such meals points have been planned by the GHMC. In its budget, the civic body has earmarked Rs.11 crore for the Rs.5 meal scheme under which 450 gm rice, 100 gm dal, 150 gm curry and a spoon of pickle is served. Prepared at the centralized kitchen of the Hare Krishna Movement at Patancheru, each meal costs Rs.20 and the civic body provides a subsidy of Rs.15.
For the new proposal, the cost of each breakfast is expected to be Rs.5 with the civic body having to support with a subsidy of Rs.4. The GHMC officials said that issues related to new project would be considered and details worked out once a decision was taken at appropriate levels. “From the experience of Rs.5 meal, it will not be a big issue to work upon Re.1 breakfast concept,” said an official.
Scheme in Early Stage:
Mayor Mohammed Majid Hussain said the scheme was in early explorative stage and the idea was being pursued. “However, we will get on with only after all the proposed 50 centres offering Rs.5 meal are in place,” he added.
The municipal corporation also made a provision wherein interested persons can donate to the scheme on occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries and so on. “They can either contribute for part of the meal on a given day at a given centre or sponsor the whole meal,” he said.
Sri Satya Gaura Chandra Dasa, president, Hare Krishna Movement, said the Hyderabad chapter was already providing mid-day meals under ‘Akshaya Patra’ scheme to around 1 lakh children and under ‘Bhojana Mitra’, free lunch was provided at some hospitals.