Environment Association of Bangalore (EAB) has been working in the environment field since 1996. Three members of the Board of Directors, namely Dr R G Nadadur, President, Mr. N E Kumaraswamy, Treasurer and Mrs Seema Ramesh, Director joined the campaign against COVID 19 by volunteering as Corona Warriors in Bengaluru. One Director, Mr. M R Bindu Kiran volunteered as Corona Warrior in Mysuru City.
Dr R G Nadadur is the only retired IAS officer in Karnataka, and perhaps, in the entire country, to join in the fight against the COVID 19 Virus as a Corona Warrior. On the orders of the Chief Minister, he was also made a Member of a Task Force set up by Government of Karnataka.
The EAB team, toured various parts of Bengaluru City and suburbs. Their main task was to look help the Departmental functionaries, other Corona Warriors and others to take care of the migrant labour and daily wagers. The team met migrant workers from several parts of Assam, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Bengal and Orissa, apart from Karnataka itself. Some of them pointed out that there was inadequate and irregular supply of cooked food by the Government agencies. They requested that they may be given some rations so that they could cook their own food.
The EAB team found that there were some procedural problems in supplying rations to the people. They suggested to the Board of Directors of EAB that they should take up this task. There was a debate in Board as to whether EAB should get into this activity as it was not related to the environment. It was pointed out to the Board that the Niti Aayog of Government of India had written to all NGOs, including EAB and requested them to help the needy people. After a discussion, it was agreed that EAB should take up the distribution of rations to these people as a Humanitarian Project. This was the first humanitarian project taken up by EAB in its existence of over two decades.
The required funds were mobilized from relations, friends and well-wishers. Dr R G Nadadur, Mrs Seema Ramesh and Mr N E Kumaraswamy, who were able to move around, during the lockdown period, by virtue of being Corona Warriors, actually distributed bags containing rations to the needy families in different parts of Bengaluru City and suburbs. Each bag contained Aata (wheat flour); Masoor Daal (Lentils); Rice; Sugar; Salt; Oil; and Masalas. In additions, some women were also provided with milk powder/baby food for small children and also with certain personal hygiene items.
EAB received support from its Board of Directors, Life Members, Relatives, Friends and Well-wishers, functionaries of the Labor Department, Information Department, local Trade Union representatives, local Corona Warriors and local NGOs. This first Humanitarian Project of EAB gave the NGO a lot of satisfaction.