This Tamil Nadu Man Has Been Eliminating Hunger By Providing Hearty Meals At A Subsidised Rate Of Re 1
A moment of epiphany is all that one needs to transform from an ordinary man into a true hero. V. Venkataraman from Erode in Tamil Nadu might be a normal mess owner for most of us, but for hundreds of others who are in need of healthy meals, Venkataraman has become nothing short of a beacon of hope and a hero in the truest sense of the term.
The proud owner of Shri AMV Homely Mess, which is located next to the town’s General Hospital, Venkataraman, apart from running his mess also serves hearty meals at a heavily subsidized rate. It all started in 2007 for the mess-owner when a woman, who came to the hospital to get a relative admitted paid a visit to Venkataraman’s mess to buy some idlis for herself and her husband. “However, I ran out of idlis and hence, offered to give her dosas instead,” he recollected
To his surprise, the woman did not have enough money to buy dosas for two people and hence, chose to go empty stomach. Venkataraman, who has himself seen humble beginnings, decided to hand six dosas to the woman for the price of three. While many would forget such a negligible incident, it stayed with Venkataraman who realized how widespread the problem of hunger really is. This was perhaps the moment of epiphany for him, which led him to take up an initiative which is now lauded by many.
A true hero is one who goes beyond his/her limitations and helps those in need. Notwithstanding his own economic shortcomings, V. Venkataraman, a mess-owner from Erode in Tamil Nadu has been providing meals to the needy at a heavily subsidized rate of Re 1.#HelpingTrueHeroes
Posted by The Logical Indian on Friday, October 12, 2018
Close proximity to the hospital meant that his mess attracted a lot of customers who were either caretaker of the patients or were visiting their relatives. While the hospital provides food to the patients, the relatives or caretakers, who are mostly daily wage labourers are forced to remain hungry because they cannot afford food for themselves. Venkataraman decided to do something about it. “The very next day, my wife and I visited the hospital and distributed 20 tokens worth Re 1 each, with which people could buy meals from my mess,” he informed.
He shares that the people who receive the tokens have been continually deprived of adequate food which makes their conditions even more difficult. While they visit the hospital to take care of their loved ones, Venkataraman, in turn, takes care of these people by feeding them.
Venkataraman, who is himself a man with limited means, continued to help those hungry souls by providing healthy meals at minimum costs. The hospital goers had a reason to rejoice as the caretakers, who belong mostly to economically deprived sections of the society now had access to meals, all thanks to Venkataraman’s efforts. Not only that, but the assurance of a day’s meal comes as a relief to many of these people whose family members are admitted in the hospital.
Seeing loved ones on the hospital bed can be a challenging experience for many, and yet, these people, notwithstanding hardships of their own mundane experiences, continue to soldier through.
From then on, Venkataraman has been unrelentingly serving hearty meals to the beneficiaries at a heavily subsidised rate of Re 1 per meal. With a token worth Re 1, an individual is eligible to collect food items like dal, idli, sambar, dosa and more which are available to walk-in customers for normal prices ranging between Rs 35 to Rs 45.
Venkataraman, whose own father was a general railway employee, understands the evils of poverty firsthand. Notwithstanding his own economic shortcomings, he subsidises the tokens with the money that he makes from selling food to walk-in customers. What started in 2007 with 20 tokens every day and now scaled up manifold with over 70 tokens being distributed on a daily basis. Even as his business has suffered losses, the family of four has to often depend on the meagre income of Venkataraman’s wife who is a yoga instructor.
A lot has changed over the last decade, especially the cost of products and raw materials shares Venkataraman, however, his goal of helping the needy remains undeterred. He shared that is next goal is to serve 100 people every day and has been developing a strong team to support his noble initiative.
Venkataraman’s initiative requires active assistance and while taking a note of his unique efforts in eliminating hunger, Neurobion Forte, living up to their motto of #HelpingTrueHero has recognized V. Venkataraman as one of the heroes for his selflessness. The problem of hunger in India is widespread and The Logical Indian salutes V. Venkataraman while commending Neurobion Forte for encouraging people like him.