Power of Social media: Poor vendor who lost his business gets massive crowd in front of stall

Social Media plays a very important role in today’s life. During the Covid-19 pandemic and social-distancing, it brings people closer to lend a helping hand to those who need it the most.

Social media has changed many lives and the latest example is an elderly couple in Delhi whose Baba Ka Dhaba in Malviya Nagar has now been listed by Zomato for online food delivery.

During the nationwide lockdown, small vendors and roadside businesses have been badly affected and are finding it difficult to meet their day-to-day expenses.

A video, which has gone viral on social media in no time, shows how an 80-year old couple Kanta Prasad and Badami Devi from Malviya Nagar, Delhi has become an overnight star.

Vasundhara Tankha Sharma posted a video by a food blogger featuring the couple and said it “completely broke my heart”. She urged the people of Delhi to “please, please go eat at Baba ka Dhaba in Malviya Nagar”.

In the video shot by blogger Gaurav Vasan yesterday, Kanta Prasad said that he has been running the small food stall ‘Baba Ka Dhaba’ for 30 years near Hanuman Temple in Delhi’s Malviya Nagar. Due to the COVID pandemic, people started avoiding roadside food due to which they lost their daily income.

Kanta Prasad says that he and his wife Badami Devi usually start cooking at 6.30 am and are ready with the day’s meal by 9.30 am. Dal, curry, parathas and rice are kept in large dishes to be sold for around ₹ 30-50 a plate.

When he was asked how much he had earned in lockdown, he broke down and took out a few ₹ 10 notes from a box. Scraps for hours of hard work. They hardly ever made huge profits, but the pandemic has been devastating for their little enterprise. The couple has two sons and a daughter but never gets help from them.

As soon as the video of the old man wiping his tears went viral, it garnered thousands of likes. Many came forward to help the couple financially and others announced plans for lunch at Baba Ka Dhaba. Among those who tweeted are actor Sonam Kapoor, cricketer R Ashwin, IPL team Delhi Capitals and food delivery app Zomato.

“We are very happy with the number of customers that are turning up now. We are grateful for the public support,” said Kanta Prasad. His wife added, “During the lockdown months we could not sell anything. We struggled to survive but today we are flooded with customers. We want to give our blessings to all those who helped us.”

Writer, historian, and activist Dharam Sikarwar is a very active author The Youth. He writes on national and international issues, environment, politics. He is an avid book reader as well.