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Home / North-east / Over 800 students volunteer to man helpline for Assam stranded

Over 800 students volunteer to man helpline for Assam stranded

Covid-19 warriors go on call to answer call of the hour
Bibhash Deva Nath takes calls of stranded citizens at his residence at Rangia in Kamrup district on Sunday.
Bibhash Deva Nath takes calls of stranded citizens at his residence at Rangia in Kamrup district on Sunday.
Picture by Shajid Khan

Shajid Khan   |   Guwahati   |   Published 10.05.20, 07:15 PM

It is in times of crisis that the real warriors come to the forefront.

During the coronavirus pandemic, along with healthcare workers, police, journalists on the frontline, over 800 students of Gauhati University, Assam Engineering College, Cotton University, among some other institutes, are acting as volunteers of Assam Cares Migrant Outreach Programme to provide round-the clock-assistance to the stranded Assamese across the nation and abroad from home.

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The efforts of these real heroes, the unsung corona warriors, has largely remained out of focus yet their work is lending a much needed helping hand.

A volunteer, Bibhash Deva Nath, who is a student of Assam Engineering College, said, “After stranded citizens give a missed call to the helpline number, they receive a form to fill their names but many of them fail to fill the form properly. We call them collect their personal details, bank account details and other information for the aid from the government. I am happy to help them.”

Another volunteer, Kumar Shivam, who is a student of Cotton University, said, “I personally take more than 40 calls everyday and majority of them belong to humble background and are not tech savvy so I help them in filling up the forms and I am happy to be part of this mission.

Raj Pritam Gupta ,of Assam Engineering College, said, “Our online classes are being held but I don’t repent missing them as I am participating in this noble cause, which is aiding people in these trying times. I have also created a database of Assam residents staying abroad.”

Salim Malik, a native of Baihata Charali of Kamrup district, who is a working professional in Bangalore, said, “I have received Rs 2,000 after registering myself through the dedicated helpline. I want to thank the Assam government for such a gesture and token of love.”

Another professional, Afsana Alam, of Udalguri, who works in Ahmedabad, said, “I am yet to get any financial aid though I applied through the helpline.

The government, as a part of the effort, has credited Rs 2,000 each to the bank accounts of as many as 86,000 migrant workers from the state, who have been stranded in other states amid the ongoing nationwide lockdown.

Health and finance minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who is personally monitoring the project, has termed it “one of the largest” such outreach programmes compared to other states.

The government has also paid Rs 2 crore to over 800 cancer patients stranded in Mumbai and other parts of the nation through the outreach programme.

Sources said these 86,000 people are among the 99,758 people found eligible for cash relief after the government processed 4,29,851 calls for help and 2,28,126 applicants who had filled up the e-form through the dedicated helpline.



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