Mumbai: In an attempt to ensure that not a single child is deprived of basic education, a Mumbai-based citizens' group has initiated a unique donation drive seeking second-hand gadgets and smart devices.

The Mumbai North Central District Forum (MNCDF) is a citizens' group which is actively involved in voluntary social work. As most of the private and state-run schools have now adapted to virtual classrooms, those from underprivileged backgrounds are finding it difficult to afford a smart device.

Unable to find any remedy for their financial problems, families living in parts of Maharashtra and also living in the outskirts of the state have approached the members of MNCDF seeking help in buying gadgets and smart devices.

"Many people have approached us to help them in the procurement of gadgets which is why we have generated a donation campaign requesting people to donate their unused smart devices, which can be used by these people", Trivankumar Karnani, founder and spokesperson MNCDF told FPJ.

The group had launched the campaign on August 1 by initiating an online and offline donation drive. The campaign was created through both social media (online) as well as word of mouth (offline) as well.

MNCDF have received varieties of smart devices including tablets, smartphones, iPads and iPhones till date, which they are planning to hand out to the people on August 15. The devices will be donated in phases not only to the children studying in BMC-run schools in Mumbai but also to those who are studying in different Zilla Parishad (ZP) schools.

"We have asked people to donate gadgets directly because many people update their smart gadgets frequently and a lot of gadgets remain unused so these gadgets don't get wasted and could be put into good use," Karnani stated

"The drive received a good response and we have received a variety of devices. We will now sort them and hand out to the people on August 15," he added, also mentioning the drive would continue even after the August 15.

"Most of the people who are living outside Mumbai do not have the ability to buy smart devices. Even if they buy they are not well equipped with their usage," stated Ramesh Salunke, former educator and activist.

"It's good that independent groups and organisations are now coming for the support of these people. But there are a large number of people who don't have the facilities. The government should have thought of some remedy before initiating the whole virtual classroom thing," stated Salunke.

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