Bhubaneswar: Nihar Ranjan Maharana, a UN volunteer deserves special applause for helping needy people and stray animals during the lockdown period. He is distributing relief material and spreading awareness too.
Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik recently praised Nihar for his effort, on his twitter handle.
Nihar has also helped in the awareness programme of the women police team of the Commissionerate Police on hygiene through free distribution of sanitary napkins and sanitisers in some parts of the Odisha capital.
“During the initial period of the lockdown, no one was thinking about the stray animals. We had identified some places in the city where stray animals fully depend on the leftover food of small hotels and visitors. The places are Khandagiri area, Shikharachandi, Nandankanan and Dhauligiri etc. In these places, the strays, especially monkeys, cattle and dogs are acquainted with the food given by the tourists. We tried to feed them,” said Nihar.
“We are now supplying dry food to slum dwellers in association with the BDA, BMC and the Commissionerate Police. We are also giving relief to the migrant labourers,” said Nihar.
“We are planning to help poor women who are jobless. Some of them are helping us in distributing sanitary napkin pads in slums,” he added.
“Besides Cuttack and Bhubaneswar, we are also planning to distribute relief in some other parts like Keonjhar, Kendrapara, and Jagatsinghpur etc,” he informed.
“The funding is coming from many social organisations of Bhubaneswar and prominent people,” he said.
“Some other organisations just keep food for the animals on the road but we use paper plates. During daytime, the road is so hot that they cannot eat directly from the road. That is why some are not eating properly,” said Nihar.
“I am working for UNDP since 2017. After my studies, I started working for the NGO, PRADAN,” said Nihar.
“As a child, I wanted to be a pilot. I couldn’t crack the exam, so I tried for the civil service examination for three years. That too, did not happen. After that, I dedicated myself totally to social work,” he added.
Nihar is a native of Berhampur and lives in Bhubaneswar.
“My family supports me a lot in this work. My father is a government servant and stands by me in whatever I do,”said Nihar.