New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) The night shelters run by the Delhi government are currently providing food to over 20,000 people and the number is expected grow manifold in the coming days.
According to an official from the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) -- an independent department under the Delhi government operating and managing 234 shelter homes at various locations in the national capital through the Shelter Management Agencies (SMAs) -- about 35 more such shelters will be build amid the nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
"The basic function of the night shelters is to provide accomodation to homeless people during winters. However, with the lockdown situation, the Chief Minister has said that the shelters will be providing food to all those who are in need," the official said.
Not just those in need, but anyone who needs lunch and dinner can visit the shelters and take the food, Cheif Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said.
According to the data from the DUSIB, the night occupancy in the 234 shelters as on March 15 was 8,084.
"On Thursday, lunch was served to over 20,000 people in these shelters. We are working on 35 new shelters which will be ready soon," the official said."
On Tuesday, the first day of the nationwide lockdown, about 10,000 people were served, while those taking food has doubled in just two days.
"As people are getting to know about food being served here, they are approaching the nearest shelters. The government is expecting the number to increase. We are gearing up to serve about 1.5 lakh people in the coming days," the official added.