Hyderabad: Hamida Bee, 55 is presently living alone in a single room rented accommodation, after losing her husband to an illness, some years ago. Even her own son, who lives in another locality of Hyderabad, don’t visits her, forcing her to venture out and earn on her own. At 55, with myopia, she has to work as a house maid, which depicts the harsh reality of her life.
Ramadan becomes more difficult for this religious lady, as she has to work, to earn ‘Iftar’ and “Suhoor’ despite observing fast for whole month of Ramadan,
Going down south to Karnataka state, Mastan Bee, 63 a widow from village Chidri in Didar district has a similar story to tell. She has no children. She wholly relies on Zakat and Charity. Sometime her neighbors come to her rescue and provide her with ration, but that only lasts for few months.
Going up east of India to Telijant village in Bankura ditrict of West Bengal, hundreds of stories of harsh survival starts pouring in from almost every district in this state. Take the case of Manowara Bibi and her husband Jumman.
Bibi, 30, and Jumman, 45, continues to work in the scorching heat in a nearby forest, collecting Shawl leafs and woods to sustain themselves, despite fasting for the whole month. The couple and their two children live in Telijant, a Muslim dominated village in Bankura District of West Bengal and the fate of almost all families in this village is no different.
To provide ease to all such families across India, US-based Indian Muslim Relief & Charities (IMRC) reached out to widows and needy like Hamida Bee, Rubina Begum, Fatima Bee and Manowara Bibi across 22 states during the month of Ramadan with the money collected in charities – zakat and fitrah – from Indian expatriates.
IMRC distributed 6,70,395 kgs of grain, over 48,75,600 (4.8 million) meals to 20,315 families benefitting 81,260 persons across 22 Indian states in this Ramadan.
The food in grains package includes items such as wheat flour, rice, lentils, oil, salt, chilli, onion and other spices for whole month of Ramadan.
Now Hamida Bee don’t have to worry about work during Ramadan. Similar is the case of other widows, orphans, poor and needy, who benefitted from IMRC ‘Ramadan Feeding Program.”
“Every year in the Ramadan month I used to pray to Allah to send us some help. Allah has accepted my Dua and has send me with food grains this Ramadan.May Allah bless all those who provided us with food packages,” said Golbahar Bibi, 70, a widow from Telijant Village in West Bengal.
In Haryana, the north Indian state, taking cue from IMRC Ramadan Feeding Programme, the Harayan Waqf Board, CEO Akeel Ahmed who is also Additional Director General of Police, Law and Order in Haryana issued directions to officials to distribute ration of Rs two lakh among poor’s.
“Akeel Ahmed had inaugurated IMRC Ramadan ration distribution in Haryana earlier this month and motivated by its efforts, that if Indian Diaspora of America can come forward to help people in India, then why not we Indians can help among whom we live, directed Haryana Waqf board to distribute ration of Rs 2 lacs among poor and needy ,” said Shafi Ahmed, IMRC Volunteer from Haryana.
Last year too the IMRC had distributed 545,000 kgs of grains, over 3 million meals, to 15,000 families across 19 states in India.
The 22 states covered under the Ramadan Feeding Program included Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Jammu and Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Manipur, Bihar, Jharkhand, Haryana, Delhi, Maharashtra, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Karnataka, Odisha, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Uttarakhand and Nagaland.