Bhubaneswar: Reliance Foundation, in response to the tragic train accident that occurred in Odisha’s Balasore June 2, has announced a comprehensive 10-point relief program to assist the families affected by the incident.
The relief measures include immediate and long-term support to address various needs of the affected communities.
Firstly, ambulances involved in the rescue efforts will receive free fuel through the Jio-BP network. Secondly, Reliance stores will provide free ration supplies, including flour, sugar, dal, rice, salt, and cooking oil, for the next six months to affected families. In addition, free medicines will be offered to support the injured in their immediate recovery, with provision for hospitalization if required.
Founder & Chairperson of Reliance Foundation Nita Ambani expressed her condolences to the bereaved families and emphasized the organization’s commitment to helping them rebuild their lives and prepare for the future. She said that Reliance Foundation aims to equip those impacted by the accident with specialist skills through training programs, thereby increasing their chances of finding new employment opportunities. Furthermore, women who may have lost their sole earning family member will be offered microfinance and training opportunities to support their financial independence.
Recognizing the emotional toll of the tragedy, Reliance Foundation will provide counselling services for emotional and psychosocial support. Moreover, the organization will extend employment opportunities through Jio and Reliance Retail to one family member of each deceased individual, as needed, to help them secure a stable livelihood. To assist individuals with disabilities, support aids such as wheelchairs and artificial limbs will be provided.
To enable rural families affected by the accident to rebuild their lives, Reliance Foundation will provide livestock, including cows, buffalos, goats, and poultry, as a means of alternate livelihood support. Additionally, a family member of each bereaved family will receive free mobile connectivity for a year, facilitating their communication and enabling them to rebuild their livelihoods.
Since the occurrence of the accident, Reliance Foundation’s specialist disaster management team has been actively involved in the rescue and relief efforts in Balasore. The team closely coordinated with the Emergency Section, Collectorate, Balasore, and the National Disaster Response Force. Their efforts included evacuating passengers from the coaches, providing necessary medical aid, and ensuring the availability of essential supplies such as masks, gloves, ORS, bedsheets, and lighting. The foundation’s volunteers also facilitated the use of gas cutters to rescue trapped passengers and mobilized additional volunteers from nearby communities to support the rescue operations.
To sustain the rescue efforts, Reliance Foundation collaborated with local youth volunteers who prepared meals for approximately 1,200 people, including rescue personnel and affected families present at the accident site. Adequate drinking water was also provided to ensure the well-being of everyone involved.
Reliance Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Reliance Industries Limited, aims to play a catalytic role in addressing India’s development challenges through innovative and sustainable solutions. Led by Founder and Chairperson of Reliance Foundation Nita Ambani, it focuses on rural transformation, education and health among others and has touched the lives of over 69.5 million people across India, in more than 54,200 villages and several urban locations.