The government's decision to suddenly scrap ₹500 and ₹1,000 notes is causing immense hardship to many people.
Long queues and endless wait at banks, non-functioning ATMs, lack of change, the struggle to pay for daily needs such as tea at the corner shop and groceries at the local vendor — all this has thoroughly disrupted the so-called common person's life.
Amidst all the chaos, a family-owned restaurant in Akola, Maharashtra, is offering free food to people who are passing by and have no currency or change to pay with.
The Maratha Dhaba is located on National Highway 6 and its proprietors have placed a huge hoarding near the road that says, "If you only have ₹500 or ₹1,000 in your pocket and need to eat, don't worry. Please have a nice meal and you can come and pay later."
The restaurant, owned by one Sandip Patil, is now bustling with customers travelling on the busy NH6 highway that runs through the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Jharkhand and West Bengal.
"People who have been travelling are facing the problem of cash crunch," Patil told NDTV India. "Banks are crowded, ATMs have run out of cash. So, ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi made the announcement and we realised that people were in a soup, we decided to open our doors to everyone."
In what can only be seen as the effect of goodwill extended by the restaurant, many customers who ate for free are now making a point to come by and pay the amount back.
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