38-year-old Azhar Maqsusi is famous across the city and the country for relentlessly feeding hundreds of people every day.

Two rotis and no one sleeps hungry Hyderabad mans campaign completes a yearAll images: Azhar Maqsusi
news Human interest Wednesday, February 21, 2018 - 13:29

What do you do when you see children begging at a traffic junction in a crowded city? What would happen if you give them ‘two rotis’ instead of money?

This is exactly what 38-year-old Azhar Maqsusi from Hyderabad has been advocating for the past one year, with his ‘do roti’ (two rotis) campaign. The goal of the campaign, according to Azhar, is simple. People on the streets of India need food first and money later.

Azhar is famous across the city and the country for relentlessly feeding hundreds of people every day, first under the Dabeerpura Flyover, and later in front of the state-run Gandhi Hospital.

Speaking to TNM, he said, “Even though I had started receiving enough monetary and physical support to personally ensure that several people were fed in Hyderabad every day, I wanted to do more.”

“I was thinking about how each person who says they want to help the poor can contribute in their own way, instead of donating money. That’s when we came up with this idea of the ‘do roti’ campaign. Anyone can participate in this and it hardly takes any effort,” he adds.

Under the campaign, all one has to do is carry a little extra food (not necessarily rotis) with their lunch box while going to college or work and give it to a needy person that they encounter.

“Especially when you encounter children, when we give them money, we are encouraging either their parents who are forcing them to beg or the massive child trafficking mafia that is present in all big cities,” Azhar says. 

By giving the children food instead of money, Azhar believes that it is possible to dissuade such practices, and also ensure that the needy child is able to eat properly.

Here are a few pictures from across India.

Speaking to TNM when he had started the campaign, Azhar had said that his inspiration to feed the hungry came from his own difficulties. 

“I was four years old when my father died, I have seen my mother struggling to raise me and my siblings. On many nights, I have slept on an empty stomach as a child. When I see hungry people who cannot even afford food, I can relate,” he had said.

With the ‘Do Roti’ campaign, Azhar hopes that no poor person would go to sleep hungry anywhere in the country. He also leads by example, distributing several rotis every day.

Azhar is happy that by sharing constant updates on his Facebook page, many of his online friends from across the country have also begun participating in the campaign.

“I have received pictures of people distributing food in Bangalore, Indore, Assam, Kolkata, Delhi, Hyderabad and various districts of Telangana. Thousands of people have participated and over the past one year, roughly at least 3 to 4 lakh rotis have been given to the needy,” Azhar says.

With a goal to see a hunger-free India, Azhar hopes that the movement and campaign continue long after he is gone.


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