Coronavirus: Tata's Taj trust ramps up meals supply
E Kumar Sharma April 20, 2020
Think of healthcare workers and their needs and thoughts of providing them personal protective equipment (PPEs) and other accessories occupy the mindspace. But equally important is providing them safe and nutritious food. In a bid to address this crucial need, the Taj Public Service Welfare Trust of Tatas has got itself busy distributing "nutritious meals" to medical staff in key hospitals and COVID-19 centers across Mumbai, Bengaluru and New Delhi. Speaking to Business Today, P V Ramana Murthy, Global Head, Human Resources, IHCL and Chairman, Taj Public Service Welfare Trust, explained some of the initiatives and how they were being ramped up. The Trust is serving nutritious meals to health care workers, as well as needy migrant workers.
The meals are prepared and delivered by TajSATS in Mumbai and individual hotels in other cities. TajSATS is an IHCL company and a leading player in airline catering. In 2008, the Taj Public Service Welfare Trust (TPSWT) was created with an aim to provide relief and support to victims of natural or man-made disasters. The trust has also partnered with Chef Sanjeev Kapoor for this initiative. Kapoor, explains Murthy, "is helping raise contributions in these cities. In Mumbai we are working closely with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to offer approximately 10,000 meals a day to medical fraternity at the Kasturba Hospital, The King Edward Memorial Hospital, Lokmanya Tilak Municipal Medical College and General Hospital, Nair Hospital, and J J Hospital, and the number has been steadily increasing." The Trust told Business Today that the initiative was started on March 23, 2020 and will continue for the duration of the coronavirus lockdown.
It added: "We are also distributing meals to medical staff in Victoria Hospital in Bengaluru in partnership with the Taj West End - over 4,800 meals have been delivered till April 15. As of March 30, 2020, we started serving meals at Lady Hardinge Medical College in New Delhi (200 meals). The scope has now widened to include 7 hospitals in New Delhi - these are Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital, Lady Hardinge Medical College, Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital, G B Pant Hospital, Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, Deen Dayal Upadhyay and Dr Ambedkar Hospital. Over 26,000 meals have been delivered in New Delhi."
An additional initiative was flagged off on March 31, 2020. In partnership with Tata Sons, TPSWT is providing meals to migrant workers in Mumbai. This is also handled by TajSATS. 5,000 meals were delivered the first day, 10,000 the second day and 20,000 from the third day onwards. Till April 15, as many as 2.95 lakh meals were delivered. Murthy told Business Today, "We are trying to help wherever there is need and wherever we could reach out to."
Seven IHCL hotels across the country are offering rooms to the medical fraternity during these times - they are Taj Lands End, Taj Santacruz, The President and Ginger Andheri East in Mumbai, Ginger Madgaon, Ginger City Centre in Noida and Ginger New Delhi Rail Yatri Niwas. Seven other Ginger hotels across the country are also being used for quarantine purposes - these include one wing of Ginger Bhubaneshwar, Ginger MIDC Andheri, Ginger Faridabad, Ginger Inner Ring Road in Bangalore, Ginger Pantnagar in Uttarakhand, Ginger Chennai, Vadapalani, and Ginger East Delhi.