As a heartwarming initiative called ‘Hunger has no religion’, a Hyderabad based Azhar Maqsusi has been feeding underprivileged people free of cost for eight years outside the state-run Gandhi Hospital in the city. However, Azhar was warned by the police on Wednesday, August 21 to stop his activities and a challan was issued against him.
Youth from a lot of states and many people are actively supporting his initiative across the country.
Speaking to The Logical Indian, Azhar Maqsusi said: “There were about 100-150 people who had come to eat at Gandhi Hospital at 2:30 pm on August 21. They were all poor people who cannot afford to buy anything to eat. However, the police wanted us to stop the activity immediately and also threatened to arrest us if we don’t stop.”
“We asked them to give us a small space in the hospital, but they refused and asked us to leave,” he said.
— azhar maqsusi (@azhar_maqsusi) August 21, 2019
“When we feed the people on the streets, there are a lot of people who come and stand in the queue. Many of these people can be drunkards, but we can’t deny food to anyone. They’re hungry people. We don’t create any chaos neither do we throw litter,” Azhar told The Logical Indian.
“Even if we get a small area, be it a garbage dumping area, we can clear that and use it to feed the poor. We need 30 minutes to feed the people and clear the area,” he added.
Azhar is a known face in Hyderabad for his Nobel efforts and can be spotted feeding 400 people in the city daily.
— azhar maqsusi (@azhar_maqsusi) August 22, 2019
“My father died when I was four years old and my mother struggled a lot to raise me and my siblings. I know what it is like to sleep hungry,” he says. “Azhar once immediately gave away the food he was carrying home to the lady who was begging,” Azhar said.
He started the initiative under the Dabeerpura flyover in 2012, along with his NGO Called ‘Sani Welfare Foundation’, which has spread across Bengaluru, Guwahati, Raichur and Tandur.
Taking to Twitter on Wednesday, Azhar wrote “We indeed feed people on the side of the road, but we keep the place neat and tidy when we go. We conduct this initiative outside because the hospital management doesn’t allow us to feed poor people within their premises. There is no traffic disturbance or any issue to anyone else. We request you to please not let this initiative close.”
Several people came out in his support and tweeted that he had been doing this work for many years, and urged the police not to stop the initiative.
Azhar Maqsusi and the people supporting the initiative urge the Telangana Government to grant them any small place which is not for use to the hospital or any corner in the city that they can use to feed the underprivileged and the hungry.
“There are so many incidents of negligence in hospitals. Why are we questioned when we are doing something good for the poor? We don’t want to see any starvation deaths, ” Azhar said.
Azhar does not plan to stop the initiative, “Till I can ensure it, each person who comes will be given at least one meal a day,” he says.
However, Police said that they don’t have any issue with Azhar Maqsusi’s initiative and they support it wholeheartedly but this has been creating a law and order situation as many unscrupulous elements create ruckuses. We are just asking him to distribute food somewhere else.
Every day a large number of homeless, poor people who cannot afford to consume a decent meal have been standing in queues under the Dabeerpura bridge in Hyderabad. The Logical Indian strongly stands in support of Azhar Maqsusi and several others who go out of their way feed the poor and eradicate hunger and starvation from the country. Such selfless initiatives set an example for many and should be encouraged and supported by everyone in society.