The Bengaluru based Akshaya Patra Foundation opened its first Delhi Community Kitchen on Tuesday in the presence of Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister, Manish Sisodia. The kitchen is opened to encourage more student to attend schools.
The community kitchen is opened at Delhi’s Mohan Cooperative Industrial Area and is the 51st of its kind that is run by the charitable foundation across India.
Sisodia said “in our efforts to encourage more students to attend school and our serious commitment towards providing best quality meals to the students, we have collaborated with the Akshaya Patra Foundation to launch this kitchen”.
The community kitchen is just 5 minutes (walk) away from the city government school in the area according to the statement. The food items that will be offered are “suji ka halwa with chana”, “puri and chole” along with some others.
Sisodia said the Delhi’s Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal flew to Bengaluru (Bangalore) in order to inspect the quality of food that is provided by the foundation and only once he was satisfied with the safety and standard of food he invited the foundation to Delhi and asked them to provide meals for students of Delhi government schools.
He said “the goal is to provide best quality food to our children, and today we have achieved that goal by collaborating with Akshaya Patra Foundation”, adding “the quality of food is important, but the intent of cooking and feeding is also important. When we cook food with love and affection, it gets transferred to the food, and the food will taste delicious”.
Delhi’s Deputy CM also said that “the foundation thinks that serving food is a noble goal, and they have come a long way from starting with a few children, to now serving meals to lakhs of them across the country”.
Sisodia was also heard talking about the importance of maintaining the food quality standards, he said “how can we think about the progress of this country if the quality of food that we serve to children is stale, and not up to the mark? Food is a basic essential and good quality food is a must”.
In February, Prime Minister Narendra Modi served the 3 billionth meal, and also praised the NGO for their efforts in eradicating hunger from India and termed it as “a remarkable feat”.
The Chairman of the NGO (Non-Governmental Organisation), Madhu Pandit Dasa said “In Delhi, we have been trying to enter for the last 10 years. We already have made two kitchens there and awaiting the nod from authorities. The Kejriwal government wants us to be there, but there are a few complications”.
The Akshaya Patra Foundation is a non-profit organisation which was established in 2000 in Bengaluru by Madhu Pandit Dasa. Amongst the trustees of this organisation are entrepreneurs, corporate professions, and missionaries of the famous ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) in Bengaluru.