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Serving Meals At Rs 5, Meet Anoop Who Is Helping Nation Fight Against Hunger In COVID Pandemic

 

 

 

 

 

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If you happen to cross Ganga Shopping Complex, Sector 29 of Noida, you will find a man standing with his staff members with a spatula in his hand, serving meals for Rs 5.  He does this to everyone who comes to his stall, regardless of whether he is rich or poor. Wearing masks is compulsory for everyone and the place is now properly sanitized periodically.
The menu at his restaurant is made with the tadka of “desi- ghee” and keeps changing everyday. The man makes sure that the quality is not compromised at any cost.

We are talking about the owner of the restaurant ‘Dadi Ki Rasoi’, 63 years old Mr Anoop Khanna, a Chemist by profession and an Activist and Social Servant by heart and his deeds.

Where many organizations are working on their personal level to curb the menace of hunger and basic amenities in various parts of the country, Mr Anoop Khanna, since August 2015, is into the service of providing the three basic needs – “food, clothing and medicine” to the needy. His initiative Dadi Ki Rasoi provides food to almost 500 individuals daily without fail. People stand in a queue and wait for their turn patiently. They carry change in their hands to not waste other’s time. All of these rules are set by Mr Anoop Khanna to inculcate civic sense in them.
Even after the pandemic, where food was the basic requirement, he and his team distributed relief kits to the economically deprived people.
We, at The Efforts For Good, connected with him to know about him more and the work that he is doing.

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In ‘Dadi Ki Rasoi’ a nominal fee of Rs 5 is charged to respect the dignity and pride of anyone who comes to eat despite his economical status. Mr. Anoop always emphasized the fact that when a person pays an amount for any service, he then gets a full say in that. He can appreciate the service and as well as criticize it. Most importantly the food which he has paid money for, he can ask more if needed.

Timings to serve the meals have remained the same for five and a half years, every day between 10 am to 11:30 am at Sector 17 and 12 pm to 2 pm at Sector 29.

dadi ki rasoi

Not just food, outside his restaurant, is found a stall named ‘Sadbhavna Store’ selling old clothes, books and footwear which are donated by people they no longer need, priced at Rs 10. Unlike other donations, Mr. Anoop has levied a condition that the clothes that are brought to him should be in a decent condition as well as washed and ironed properly. Otherwise, they are returned the very moment they are brought to him. The very same is applied to books and footwear which are accepted only when they are fettle.

“It is easier to donate clothes which no longer interests us, are not in fashion anymore, or are defective. But, here at Sadbhavna Store, such donations are refused, instead, the owner of the cloth should properly get them washed and pressed.” Mr. Anoop told Efforts For Good “Through Sadbhavna store, we are making people realize the value of goodwill which is not charity. If you are coming to me with your old clothes for charity, it should carry certain emotions.” He added.

dadi ki rasoi

Since he is a certified Chemist and owns two shops in Noida, he knew that not everybody can afford medicines. To combat this problem, he enrolled himself with ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Yojana’ in Noida and named it ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Aushadhi Kendra’. The first-ever shop to provide medicines to the deprived sections of the society at his residence.

Over the years after the Internet culture came and netizens started making his videos viral, many people who are not residents of Delhi or Delhi NCR also came and joined hands with Mr. Anoop for the great work he has been doing. “We never asked anybody to donate, whatever big or small they do, it is because of their own will,” told Mr. Anoop.

“Many philanthropists come to the shop and donate either in cash or in-kind on their special occasions such as birthdays, marriage anniversaries, or any success parties. Not just them, but the shopkeepers from whom Dadi Ki Rasoi gets raw materials for the food, even they discount us for the good cause. “Something which is asked in the name of donation is not charity but, alms,” he added.

How Did It All Start

Anoop Khanna is the third generation in his family who is into social service. Before him, his father and grandfather both had contributed to this field as freedom fighters. The spirit to do something for society was always imbibed in him from the start. Apart from being a Chemist and a Businessman in Noida, he was also involved in many relief and social help group works since the time he was a youth.

The idea to start a kitchen for the socially and economically deprived people came from Anoop’s mother five and a half years ago when one fine day at the dining table, she was found unhappy about something.

“She was so engrossed in her thoughts that she was not able to eat, another reason was her illness of course. On enquiring, she told the reason that she is not eating because of her small appetite, there may be many like her because of whom the food is wasted. Why not open a small kitchen and serve food to the ones who are poor and hungry?” Anoop said.

dadi ki rasoi

This was her last wish and Anoop had to make it possible for her at any cost. His mother even offered her savings for the cause and at this moment, there was nothing that could stop him. He refused his beloved mother’s savings and promised her something small, yet a worthy startup for the poor.

With an initial investment of Rs 30,000 and a suitable name “Dadi Ki Rasoi” which Anoop’s daughter suggested, they began the work from their home. At first, the startup was so small that they could only cater to 15-20 people, but gradually when people started joining in with this initiative, not just the investment but also the kitchen was converted into a stall, and later into a full air conditioned restaurant after the Lockdown.

Anoop says that whatever he does for people, the satisfactory level is immeasurable and priceless. He has a team of genuine people who are like-minded and never step away from doing “Sewa”. Even the vegetable vendor from whom they take vegetables sell them at a wholesale price and in return take food for himself and his family. Anoop considers it as a give-and-take relationship.

Anoop pays his team and believes that unpaid jobs have no future. “I have a small team to which I pay for their hard work. I do this because, if there is no remuneration involved, there won’t be any accountability,” he said.
“This is no charity but a responsibility. If I keep volunteers for the work and they are absent, there won’t be any damage nor can I hold them responsible but the people who depend on our Rs 5 meal will suffer,” he added.

The quality of the food which has always remained an utmost priority is monitored with the help of four CCTV cameras which are installed in the kitchen. Anoop not only examines all the raw materials himself but also tastes the food before it is finally served to the customers.

Post Pandemic Hurdles Faced By Anoop Khanna And His Team

Anoop told EFG that not much has changed post-pandemic but yes the number of people who used to come to eat at his shop got reduced to 300 from 500 approximately. He said that it had happened because most of them have left for their homes after the imposition of the lockdown. Moreover, some of them still fear to eat outside but not the ones who are poor as they have no options.

 

To educate the visitors of Coronavirus, he and his team have also organised a health campaign with doctors and health staffs.

When asked about the funds and how it has been affected after the Covid-19, Anoop told that he and his work doesn’t at all depend upon the charitable fundings. The fundings only add extra items to the menu.

“I started ‘Dadi Ki Rasoi’ with ‘Dal, Chawal and Achar’ from my own money and under my own capacity. I can still carry forward this work as I am a contended old man who has no responsibilities of the family anymore. Both my children are married and well settled. I am a Chemist by profession and my shop gets me a decent monthly income. I was able to expand this project with the help of fundings and philanthropists but as soon as I will stop getting them, I will come back to ‘Dal, Chawal and Achar’” he said.

Anoop Khanna urged all the youths to step into the field of social work only when they are settled well in life. He believes that until and unless you are content and fulfilled in your life and goals, these kinds of works, which require a lot of money, will only bring a burden to you.
“I am a person who has achieved almost everything I have desired in my life when I was a youth. Now I have both time and money. So, anyone who is willing to do social works should first reach such levels in his life because this is a work that requires a lot of consistency and dedication. If you will not have sufficient resources to back you, the only way out will be seeking help from others or even asking for funds which one should never do.” he said while concluding the conversation.

dadi ki rasoi

People like Anoop Khanna are not only setting examples in front of the youths but are making sure that the impact they leave is carried forward in the coming generations as well. It is their vision and hard work that six years ago where the concept of economical private canteens cum hotels was not even known to people, today in India, almost six hundred are running smoothly.
We at the Efforts Of Good wish Anoop Khanna loads of success in this field ahead.

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It's not how much we give
but how much love we put into giving.
- Mother Theresa Quote

Goonj Is Working With 1000’s Of Volunteers & Partner NGOs To Provide Covid-19 Relief In 18 States

 

 

 

 

 

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With the extension of the lockdown the crisis of migrant labourers and daily wagers has just grown bigger due to uncertainty and fear of future. In the migrant colonies, slums and for people in the villages hunger and desperation is building up day by day. This is high time we step up our efforts to support our people who are in dire need of food and hygiene essentials to survive the pandemic, Covid-19.

After the India-wide lockdown, a lot of jobless migrant workers are stuck in cities with hardly any resources while many started retreating back to their villages. With the loss of livelihoods, a large number of them are now struggling to support their families.

Goonj activated its pan India teams and a pan India network of partner organizations and volunteers in urban and rural India. This network, built over the last two decades, helps them learn from the ground, reach material quickly and review and adapt strategy periodically. Intensifying this network has helped Goonj reach and start work across 17produced states/UT in the last three weeks.
Support the cause you care for. Browse All CampaignsBrowse all campaigns

Rahat COVID: Relief Work by Goonj

92,887 Raised
Out of 50,00,000

Share

No To Hunger : COVID Relief In Rural India

4,39,30,5.5 Raised
Out of 10,00,000

Share

Provide Ambulance : Help Them Reach Hospital On Time

3,82,370 Raised
Out of 62,50,000

Share

Project Annapoorna : Become A Hunger Warrior

7,582 Raised
Out of 1,50,00,000

Share

The Stray Project : A Thought Of Humanity

41,094 Raised
Out of 25,00,000

Share

Ended

Stand By Ladakh

40,962 Raised
Out of 10,00,000

Share

Closed

Support our Frontline COVID Warriors

25,615 Raised
Out of 20,00,000

Share

KHAANACHAHIYE: Fighting Hunger In COVID19

97,02,146 Raised
Out of 1,00,00,000

Share

Campaign Closed
Brought machinery

Empower Poor Women To Rise Out Of Poverty

1,36,544 Raised
Out of 3,85,000

Share

9 Happy Fridges Installed
Ordered a minivan and sent for modification

Goonj’s focus: 

Majority of the Covid-19 relief work by non profits right now is in the metros and cities but Goonj is the only non profit that is also simultaneously focusing on the people in the villages and the ones stuck on highways or somewhere.

Goonj is targeting daily wagers, migrants and other vulnerable groups, who even traditionally are left out like the disabled, sex workers, LGBTQ community.

“COVID-19 is a crisis, yes…But, it’s also an opportunity for us to build the society anew. Not ‘for’ the people…but, ‘with’ the people. And in the process, we will build ourselves too.” – Anshu Gupta, Founder-Director, Goonj.

Direct Monetary and Material Transfer

Wherever Goonj got the permission to open their centres for packing and disbursement of relief material kits, they are creating a kit consisting of 20-30 kgs material including dry rations, masks, sanitary pads and other hygiene material and reaching them to people, as per needs and as per regulations with all safety precautions. This kit will help a family survive for 30 days.

Information till 10th April 2020:

  • Distributed 15,100 ration kits reaching thousands of people
  • Reached 17,700 families
  • Supporting 12 community kitchen across India with 16,600kgs of ration
  • 77,800 food packets provided to migrant laborers and daily wagers walking on the roads across the country.
  • Provided direct financial support to 32 organisations
  • Made 42,800 cloth face masks
  • 24,900 cloth sanitary napkins produced
  • Produced 1500 litres of organic sanitiser

In Goonj’s processing centers its trained team of women are making cloth face masks and cloth sanitary pads (MY-Pads), keeping all the precautions and with the permission and cooperation of the local authorities.

In this lock-down phase if you are facing any difficulty getting sanitary pads or you are running out of stock, here’s a detailed but very simple process of making Cloth Pads at home created by Goonj. “This is how we make Goonj MY Pads.” This is how our mothers and grandmothers turned their spare cloth into pads.

This disaster, unlike any other, is unprecedented in its scale and impact and that’s why we all must do our bit with Goonj to continue its relief work for millions of people in this still unfolding long-tailed disaster.

The need is huge.. We are there.. Need You too !!

Let us know your thoughts on this story

Quote
It's not how much we give
but how much love we put into giving.
- Mother Theresa Quote
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