A housing society in New Town came forward to help underprivileged families with food provisions in the month of Ramazan.
On Sunday, iftaar kits were given out to domestic help employed in the complex and toto drivers of the locality at Arena Housing Society in BA Block, which came up as a West Bengal Minorities Development And Finance Corporation housing project and now is home to 180 families.
“We are giving out potato, onion, daal, dates, turmeric powder, cooking oil, gram and sugar to 170 families,” said secretary of Arena Apartment Owners Association Siraj ul Haque, adding that the idea came from one of the residents, Sk. Hammadur Rahaman, an endocrinologist who is a gold medallist from AIIMS, Delhi.
“Ramazan is a pillar of Islam, which means restraint in Arabic. It is a way of building character and teaches one to abstain from anger, greed, conflict and jealousy. Many financially well-off people spent the lockdown months in comfort without any idea of the struggle that the less fortunate went through. But during the Ramazan month, everyone feels the same hunger pangs,” said Samsur Rahaman, former secretary of the association.
The recipients were thankful for the first-time initiative. “Of course, I am fasting,” said Soporjan Bibi, who works in five houses in the complex, as she collected her kit and made for the apartment of one of her employers.
The association did not limit the donation to only those keeping the fast or to any community. “My husband is paralysed and my son is studying. I am the only earning member. This will help us along for a few weeks,” said Basanti Sarkar, as she loaded the bag on her cycle. Ranu Raptan has learnt to sign and proudly wrote her name though she cannot see clearly. “I am working here since people started staying in this complex,” said the woman, who stays in a slum by the Bagjola canal.
While the majority of the kit were distributed from the spot, 50 would be distributed among villagers of neighbouring Ghuni, organiser Hammadur Rahaman informed.