Caretakers of a night shelter (Rain Basera) at Geeta Ghat ‘rescue’ people sleeping in open in the chilling cold. These people patrol the streets of Central Delhi in their ambulances and take the homeless to the nearest shelter home.
“This year, the cold has begun timely. Thus, we started our night patrols early,” said Rahul Rajput, a worker at an NGO, Hausla. Every night, at least seven to eight people are taken to the Rain Baseras. The rescue team is equipped with one driver and two attendants. This team operates from 11 pm to 3 am. When the homeless are taken to the shelters, they’re provided with mattress and a blanket to sleep. “These people do a great job, if not for them I would have got ill in this severe cold,” said Noora, a homeless person.
The rescue team often come across people who are not very welcoming. The vagrant people many a times are intoxicated with drugs which makes them violent. Thus, the helpers face abuse and assault. “The displaced people, on numerous occasions are hesitant to come with us. They feel we are taking them to work for us at Rain Basera, which is not the case,” an attendant said.
This campaign will go on till mid-February. The attendants said that they receive blankets and clothes from various sections of the society.