Pathikrit Saha is a Zomato delivery executive based out of Kolkata. Lovingly given the daak naam (pet name) “Roll Kaku” (Roll Uncle) by the underprivileged kids in his locality, he is popular amongst them for distributing egg and chicken rolls, Chinese food, biryani, and other items that folks cancel on the food delivery app. In fact, he is even known for arranging feasts for these kids from time-to-time and is dedicated to giving them free lessons during the evenings. Even though this great soul doesn’t care about being in the limelight for his deeds, today, it’s imperative that we share his story, in the hope that somewhere, someone else will be inspired and follow his footsteps.
Speaking to a publication, Saha revealed where his journey began: “Four years ago, I was crossing the streets near Dumdum Cantonment in Kolkata, when a dishevelled teenager came running and fell at my feet. He started begging desperately for money. I understood he was heavily drug addicted and wanted money to waste on cheap, harmful drugs. I tried to dissuade him, but his desperation was so wild and pathetic that I slapped him and he broke down. That’s where my story begins.” Saha also spoke about how this worried him to such an extent that he decided he had to take things into his own hands and began to find ways to eradicate such a harmful lifestyle. Saha began by organizing free study sessions in the evenings, which 17 kids attended at a nearby platform. He then realized that what these kids needed was a way to have some source of a steady income, for which he helped set up juice and water bottle stalls for them. Finally came the time when he realized that he could also help them out with food, which they otherwise didn’t have easy access to.
Explaining how the idea came about, Saha added: “I used to work at Kolkata Municipal Corporation, but I quit my job to devote my entire time to the kids. But, I have to run my family as well, so three months ago, I started working as a delivery executive with Zomato. This is when I befriended a kind-hearted restaurant owner in Dumdum, who stepped into my team after learning about my kids. Now, the cancelled orders from Zomato and all the excess food from his restaurant come to my kids as their evening snacks, sometimes dinner.”
Saha also shared how other restaurant owners can help feed a ton of kids who live on the streets. He said, “Generally, when a customer cancels an order on a food delivery app, the restaurant which has already prepared the food gets the refund. Most of the times, the restaurant owners give away the food to the delivery guys. If the food is already en route, the Zomato customer care instructs the delivery men to take it home or give it to the poor. Now, most of the delivery guys would take the food home. But I do not. Following my example, some other delivery men have also started feeding the street kids in their areas. I wish the endeavour continues on a larger scale and resonates all over India. So much food is wasted from restaurants every day, and not even 1% of it reaches these hungry kids. I appeal to all restaurant owners and food delivery guys to take this into account and reach out to the kids in their neighbourhood.”
The publication also reported that Saha’s non-profit venture, Help Foundation, has recently received a formal registration, and he hopes to get all the support he can for his noble cause. He said, “To the rest of Kolkata, I am a food delivery guy with Zomato, but to a group of budding youngsters in Dumdum Cantonment and across Bengal, I am an elder brother they can always confide in.” The world could really do with more people like Pathikrit Saha… well done, you make us proud!
Anyone willing to make a contribution to Help Foundation can contact: +91/98047-88406/+91/91233-48301.
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