Perumbavoor: Charity begins at home and, for most people, ends with a few donations that make them feel better for a while. But for a few like M.P. Yasar, it’s the way they live and the way they think – constantly.
Yasar, aka Yachu, of Vallam Kochangadi Maliyil Veetil in Perumbavoor has had a bumpy childhood, where he experienced a lot of food insecurity and hunger. Perhaps that’s the reason why he decided to take it upon himself to feed the hungry.
Yachu, who’s pushing 40, has been collecting leftovers from weddings and parties to provide for the needy for the past two years. The regular beneficiaries of Yachu’s food packets include those from colonies, refuge homes and streets.
He drives to places in and around Perumbaavoor, Muvattupuzha, Kothamangalam and Aluva to collect the leftovers, even at midnight. Yachu is busier on Saturdays and Sundays when maximum celebrations happen.
Apparently, it was an incident in his life that prompted Yachu to undertake such a mission. He was then working at a private hotel in Perumbavoor. One of his colleague, an old north Indian man, who was a cleaner at the hotel, regularly used to hand over leftover porottas to pavement dwellers without the knowledge of the hotel owner. But one day, it came to the owner’s notice. He scolded him badly and the old man broke into tears. Yachu recalls that the man’s tears changed him forever, prompting him to do his bit for the needy.
The tale of Yachu's benevolence doesn’t end there. He makes chicken coops for the poor, using the wood he collects from old flex boards. He also provides them with chickens.
A man with an air of benignity, Yachu is also a good farmer. He was even chosen as the best farmer by the municipality. He cultivates vegetables in his own land and neighborhood to provide for the under-privileged. At a time when banana cost Rs 75 per kilo, Yachu distributed 300 kilos to the poor for nothing.
Another commendable service he does to society is lending wheelchairs at no cost. For, he believes everyone who needs a wheelchair should quickly and easily get one, for as long as they need it. Once a wheelchair is returned after use, it’s sanitized and kept for the next person.
He also visits those affected with diabetics with a glucometer and tests their blood sugar for free. Once he pledged the documents of his own property to help a teenager, who was battling with cancer.
The philanthropist is now planning to start an ambulance service. He also wants to buy a big freezer. “Just to keep some of the collected food for the next day,” he says.
Yachu’s wife, who runs a beauty parlor, is supportive of her husband’s humanitarian works.