Jamshedpur : As the winter chill slowly sets in, and the minimum temperature hovering around 8 degree Celsius, the East Singhbhum district administration has initiated steps to set up ‘alao’ ( bonfires) to help the poor face winter at much ease.
Chief minister Raghubar Das has asked the department of Disaster Management ordering them to distribute blankets and firewood among the poor. Notices have been issued to deputy commissioners of all the 24 districts. Blankets must be purchased in adequate numbers and bonfires lighted at various chowks.
As per the plans the district administration will release funds to the three local civic bodies- Jamshedpur Notified Area Committee (JNAC), Mango Notified Area Committee (MNAC) and Jugsalai municipality for purchasing fire-woods to light bonfires at near busy streets and pavements.
The three local civic bodies would be lighting bonfires every evening at the identified locations in the city.
Under JNAC command area namely bonfires would come up at Ganesh Puja Maidan (Kadma), Bank of Baroda bus stand in Bistupur, Diagonal Road auto-rickshaw stand (Bistupur), Baridih auto-rickshaw stand, Bhuiyandih overbridge (Hume Pipe), Sitaramdera bus terminus, MGM Hospital roundabout, Sakchi roundabout, Sakchi private bus stand.
The street dwellers were seen huddled around bonfires made of wood and garbage collected from roadside.
JNAC officer adding that around six quintal woods would be used for bonfires daily. He said that the civic will cover those areas where the road dwellers frequent the most.
The local people also said that the dip in temperature is affecting their life. “The weather is extremely getting cold with every passing day. A bonfire is lit only in the evening and keeps you warm for a few hours. Soon afterwards, it’s cold again till the next evening,” said a rickshawpuller. He said that if the government is really serious about providing shield to the strays in cold wave blankets will only keep us warm throughout the day.
A district official said that distribution of blankets can certainly be a better solution. But it is for the government to take a call on the matter. The district administration is also planning to write to the state welfare department for distribution of blankets amongst homeless poor in the city.
As per the rulebook, 50 kg of wood should be provided for a single bonfire. As per apex court guidelines, states have to make arrangements for night.
Meanwhile city-based social organization Har Mahadev Seva Sangh has decided to distribute blankets among the poor this year. The blanket distribution drive will cover the city along with the near by villages. The idea is to provide shield to the less privileged from the winter.
Founding president of the association, Amarpreet Singh Kale said that various social works are being carried out throughout the year.
The purpose of distributing blankets to the needy spreads the message of sympathy, love and sacrifices to the society. He received funding from the God to serve the needy people. He also highlighted the activities conducted by the organization.