Thiruvananthapuram

Local bodies to open community kitchens

A shelter arranged for the destitute by the Thrissur Corporation in Government Higher Secondary School in the city on Wednesday.

A shelter arranged for the destitute by the Thrissur Corporation in Government Higher Secondary School in the city on Wednesday.  

Round-the-clock helpline numbers

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said the State has ordered local self-government Institutions (LSGIs) to start community kitchens at the panchayat and municipality ward levels to ensure that no one suffered due to hunger or want of medicine following the economic distress caused by the lockdown in view of the COVID-19 threat.

Briefing presspersons on the day’s COVID update here on Wednesday, Mr. Vijayan said volunteers in protective gear would reach the food and medicines, if necessary, to the homes of the poor, aged, and chronically ill. The LSGIs should start helpline numbers so that citizens could request assistance at any hour.

Government agencies should give priority to the welfare of cancer patients, those requiring dialysis, and also citizens suffering from heart diseases. The CM said the State would bring homeless persons and those who sleep rough on pavements and shop verandahs under its safety net. The LSGIs should open specialised centres for transgender people who could not provide for themselves.

Essentials

The government would intervene forcefully to curb hoarding and price rise. Discussions would be held with the governments of neighbouring States to ensure uninterrupted supply of fresh vegetables from Mysuru, Bengaluru and Ootty. The government would seek the help of traders and use the network of the Civil Supplies Corporation and Consumerfed to procure and distribute foodgrains and other provisions. The 25 godowns of FCI in Kerala together had stocks for eight months.

The Kerala State Pharmaceutical Development Corporation could forego tender norms to procure the raw material required for making hand sanitisers and other common medicines from the open market. Retired doctors would be enlisted in the drive against COVID-19.

The government had prioritised the procurement of paddy. Collectors would monitor harvesting activities using machines in Palakkad, Kottayam, Thrissur and Alappuzha. They would also ensure that the harvested grain stalks reached rice mills in time for processing.

He said welfare pensions would reach 57 lakh beneficiaries on March 27. A high-level meeting convened by the Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan here decided to to make panchayats an essential service during the lockdown. Horticorp would also be made an essential service for the supply of vegetables and fruits. The home delivery network would be extended to service more families.

The meeting resolved to take over dyfunctional private hospitals for establishment of COVID care centres.

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 6:59:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/local-bodies-to-opencommunity-kitchens/article31167185.ece

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