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The Magnificent Seven: Meet teenagers who shell out pocket money to help poor

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Srinagar: When the government announced a lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus, 18-year-old Umar Mushtaq Mir of Pattan was worried about his  acquaintances who belong to poor families.

 Experiencing their struggle first hand in last year’s lockdown, Mir, who recently passed his 12th class, decided to start fundraising among his colleagues to help the needy.  Mir immediately rang up his six close friends and started a group to raise funds for poor families.


“I called up my close friends Aliyas Rashid, Mohammad Amir, Sofi Mohsin, Rayees Ahmad of my area and Basit Qadri from Baramulla and discussed the idea with them. They were equally enthusiastic and we started a group ‘Help for Humanity’,” he said.

 Mir, a tech-savvy youngster, took to social media and posted a video message for helping poor families.  Many other students in the district joined hands and contributed from their pocket money to raise funds for the poor families.

“We got a good response especially from students from Baramulla district that came forward and joined us. We contributed from our own pockets. .A family was identified in our area and we handed over the money to them,” he said.

Mir said they are working to raise more money and arrange medicines for elderly people.

 “We posted an appeal on social media to identify people who require medicines. Our target is to buy medicines for the elderly people who need it most and can’t afford now due to the lockdown,” he said.

 Mir said they are also in the process of arranging stationery for the underprivileged students.

“We are not starting any NGO. As soon as we get a call for help we will contribute from our own pockets to buy stationery items for the students or even manage their school or college fee,” he said.