The Sikh community has always come to the rescue in times of crisis. From Australian bushfires, to Delhi riots to current COVID19 pandemic, Sikh community has always come to help.
In Delhi, the serai or inn Gurdwara Majnu Ka Tilla was offered to set up isolation wards and quarantine facilities by Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee.
DSGMC president Manjinder Sirsa said, “The Gurdwara Committee is fully committed to provide packed food products to government agencies and other needy institutions. We can give 10 lakh food products immediately to the government.” He further added that the DSGMC will provide separate rooms for heath staff, ample parking in Gurdwara premises and “the most safe and secure environment”.
In New York, the Sikh Centre cooked and packed meals for over 30,000 Americans in self quarantine. In light of the pandemic, strict hygiene measures were taken during the preparation of the meals such as maintaining social distancing and using face masks and gloves.
The ”Sewa” or service provided by the Sikh volunteers is a vegetarian meal comprising of dry fruits, rice, and lentils. The meals were prepared on Sunday and were packaged and loaded for delivery. The distribution starts on Monday in the morning, by local authorities. Volunteers who prepared and packaged the meal had a medical check and have been approved by physicians and health authorities,” Himat Singh, coordinator of the American Gurudwara Prabhandak Committee (east coast) told ANI.
The food packages were supposed to be handed over to the elderly who have trouble fending for themselves, specially-abled people, homeless and also to the single parents who are looking after their kids that can’t go out.
The food items that have been previously donated to the gurdwara are being put to use for this initiative and gurdwara funds are being used.
In the United States, a U.S based NGO also appealed to the public from all walks of life to donate as much as possible. 99% of the people taking the meals are Americans, the only Indians are those who coming from overseas or are students that are isolating for 14 days.