The government of Kerala announced on Friday that it will be providing free food kits to families and migrant labourers in the state when the state goes into complete lockdown from May 8 to May 16.

“Nobody will go hungry during the lockdown. Next week onwards free food kits will be distributed for all families and guest workers. Food will be delivered to the needy from People’s Restaurants and Community Kitchens through Local Self Government Institutions,” Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan tweeted on Friday.

The government of Kerala has shut down toddy shops and wayside eateries. Restaurants are allowed to open from 7 am to 7 pm only for home delivery and parcel of cooked food.

The state provided grocery and other essential items including food kits to people from April 2020 when the pandemic first broke out. It was stopped for a few months in between, but the kits were occasionally provided to families as well as to school students who were entitled to mid-day meals. As schools were not open, kits were provided to students.

Until March 2021, over 87 lakh families in the state were given the food kits which had essential grocery items required for a family for a month. Including rice, pulses, oil, masalas and soaps, the food kit with 17 items was well received. The distribution was started on April 10, 2020, where on the first day, the state distributed 47,000 food kits.

Kerala registered 38,460 COVID-19 infections and 54 deaths on Friday, taking the overall tally to 18.24 lakh and the toll to 5,682. The total number of active COVID-19 cases in the state now stands at 4,02,650. A total of 26,662 patients recovered, taking the number of recoveries to 14,16,177, a health department bulletin said. The Test Positivity Rate (TPR) was 26.64%.


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