Kerala

During lockdown, he repairs spectacles at doorstep for free

K.P. Mohammed Shibili repairing glasses in his house at Pattambi.  

K.P. Mohammed Shibili, a 23-year-old optical technician from Poovakode, near Pattambi, has been busy ever since offering free repair of spectacles during the lockdown. On getting calls, he goes to houses and repairs spectacles.

Mr. Shibili’s service, under the banner of the Santhwanam scheme run by the Sunni Yuvajana Sangham (SYS), has become a hit. He got nearly 90 calls for help within five days of the launch, and he could attend to most of them.

The lockdown confined Mr. Shibili, who used to work in an optical shop, to home from May 8. “I got a few personal calls for help during the lockdown and I realised how seriously important spectacles are for those who constantly wear them,” he said. “Then it dawned on me that I could do something useful for society.”

Soon, calls began inundating him. He would visit the houses in and around Pattambi and repair glasses. “Most were simple repairs, like a loose screw or lens, or bent frame,” he said.

New lenses too

He also helped people procure new lenses and other parts. However, he politely turned down requests for new spectacles. “I think it will be unethical if I provide new spectacles to people when optical shops remain closed during the lockdown,” he said.

Mr. Shibili maintains strict COVID-19 protocol during his visits. He avoids entering the house and repairs the spectacles from outside using the tiny tools he carries on his scooter. After repair, he tells the user to wash the glasses with soap.

From afar too

Although Mr. Shibili got calls for help from places like Kottayam and Kozhikode, he could not oblige them. The calls from different parts of Palakkad and neighbouring Malappuram districts were taken care of with the help of a chain service maintained by the SYS.

Among those who got Mr. Shibili’s free help are children and senior citizens. “For some children, it was a desperate situation as they needed it badly for their online classes,” he said.

Mr. Shibili became an optical technician after primary lessons from his brother Mohammed Anas and wife Ayishath Shibila, both optometrists. He plans to follow their footsteps.


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Printable version | Aug 4, 2021 4:59:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/during-lockdown-he-repairs-spectacles-at-doorstep-for-free/article34796790.ece

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