July 10 was a milestone day in this Mandaveli resident’s volunteering effort, which continues as a lockdown initiative. On this day, Baskar Seshadri, who has been offering tea and biscuits to conservancy workers, completed 100 days of this service. Thanks to donations, Seshadri has managed to make it bigger.
Seshadri started by offering refreshments to over 80 sanitary workers deployed in and around Santhome. Soon, word about his volunteering effort spread, and more people started making a contribution with the result that he managed to reach out to more frontline workers. “More recently, donations are coming from people who are not able to offer annadanam in temples and those celebrating various occasions. If I did not get help from people, it would have been difficult for me to sustain this initiative for 100 days and I am still counting,” he says.
From tea and biscuits, Seshadri started offering lunch. “First, I could not afford to feed a big number, only 5 to 10 people a day,” he says. Later, 50 migrant workers stranded at Alwarpet were fed chappatis for more than 30 days.
Recently, he extended the drive to 41 conservancy workers working late at night. “You will find them, a majority of them women, assembled at a school on Beach Road, cleaning the areas nearby from 9 p.m to 2 a.m. They come from far-away places and with the donations we are able to serve them dinner, mainly channa and chappati,” says Seshadri.