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NOIDA, INDIA, February 21, 2014 /24-7PressRelease/ -- It was a meal day for a large number of poverty-stricken families in Noida last week. Co-ordinated and provided for by Relief India Trust, an organization that works towards alleviation of human suffering, it was an event that attracted a multitude of families who can ill-afford to source the most basic of human rights.
Relief India Trust's food distribution campaign - "Nishulk Bhojan Samagri Vitaran Shivir" - was the type of modern and efficient food-distribution system that India lacks.
"We know that basic human needs are not met and a large number of families with children suffer from inadequate access to essential and fundamental resources. It's not just about distributing more food; it is time for us to start building sustainable communities. But all of us need to pitch in and expressly raise awareness of the issues behind the steep rise in numbers of young people caught up in poverty," Shikha Dhawan, chief aid officer with the Relief India Trust, said.
The volunteers for Relief India Trust actively led the campaign and distributed food items like rice, pulses and flour to the poor, including the labours on the nearby construction sites. The contentment at receiving free food was writ large on their faces and Raghu, a migrant construction worker from Bihar, appeared to have been making the most of the day. "I have packed some for my wife who is resting as we are expecting our first child. She hardly gets basic nutrition on a daily basis and this will make her happy. I hope this campaign is held more often," said a gratified Raghu.
Ms Shikha added: "There are a lot of families struggling to make ends meet right now and relief India Trust is thrilled to be able to make a little difference. We are looking to partner with several regional organizations and will continue to engage in such campaigns in the future."
All of us seek a world of hope, tolerance and social justice, where poverty is eradicated and people live in dignity. Educating people about the available resources and how to grow, select or even prepare food is primarily the Government's responsibility. But is the Government doing enough?
India is the second most populous country with an estimated 1.2 billion people and the third largest economy in terms of GDP. However, despite economic growth and self-sufficiency in food grains production, extreme poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition persist in India. An estimated 32.7 percent of the Indian population lives on less than US$ 1.25 per day. The Government apparently seems to be in denial. Politicians can no longer dismiss the data that indicates rapid growth in poverty. Simply passing the food security bill will not take away hunger. Ensuring that the policy is applied with accountability will help.
The chronic hunger and humiliation that afflict a large section of society hardly reflects our proclaimed status as a fast developing nation. There needs to be more participation. NGOs and private sector need to chip in and promote innovative solutions.
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