Sacred Games actor Rajshri Deshpande may be miles away in Kerala, but over the past four weeks, she has been ensuring that essentials reach the doorstep of every farmer in Pandhari, a village in Maharashtra that she had adopted in 2015. On Saturday, it was brought to the actor's notice that doctors in her hometown, Aurangabad, are facing a scarcity of personal protective equipment (PPE) kits. Deshpande promptly took to Twitter to highlight their plight and sought help from Shah Rukh Khan, who recently provided 25,000 PPE kits to the healthcare workers in Maharashtra.
"I had no choice but to ask Shah Rukh Khan for help. His foundation [Meer Foundation] has been doing commendable work in the current scenario. We need 2,500 PPE kits in Aurangabad. We haven't received a reply from his team, but I am hoping they will come forward to support us," says Deshpande, who had gone to Kerala for a two-week detox therapy in March and had to extend her stay in the state due to the nationwide lockdown.
The actor notes that the situation in Aurangabad is telling of how healthcare workers in the interiors of the country are ill-equipped to battle the crisis. "It has been over 20 days into the lockdown and the kits have not reached the doctors in the interiors. They are scared to attend to the patients without taking the necessary precautions. We need to take care of our doctors. This only shows that we are unprepared [to deal with the pandemic]." She also offers a word of caution about the PPE kits that are doing the rounds in the market. "Recently, I had sent a few kits to Aurangabad, but it turned out that they did not include N95 masks, and the remaining gear too had defects."
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