In this edition of ‘Heroes of Corona’ The Watchdog News interacts with Squadron Leader (Dr.) Sanjay Sinvhal, a former Indian Air Force (IAF) Officer who tied up with Big Bazaar to ensure that a steady and seamless supply of groceries are available to the members of his society during this 21 day nationwide shut down.
Sqn Ldr (Dr.) Sinvhal is a Short Service Commissioned (SSC) Officer who served for 11 years and then smoothly transitioned into the civvy street as a Corporate professional where he has garnered over 25 years of experience in a variety of unique job profiles with Fortune 500 companies like TCS, Wipro, Hinduja to name a few. Still an Air warrior at heart, Sqn Ldr. Sinvhal actively work in community service like highlighting encroachment issues as a citizen reporter, whose work has led leading media publications and civic bodies to highlight several instances of wrongdoing in Powai.
Given the former IAF man’s background of national and community service, it was only natural for him to lend his hand in an effort to provide assistance amidst the 21 day nationwide lockdown, announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 24, 2020, in a bid to contain the spread of the deadly corona virus. This decision undoubtedly disrupted civic life and placed a great strain on the provision of essential goods and services by both the public and private sectors who have had their resources stretched thin. Amidst the backdrop of these developments, Sqn Ldr (Dr.) Sinvhal has managed to tie up with biggest retailer Big Bazaar to deliver essential groceries to his Co-housing society (CHS) earning him the distinction of being a ‘Hero of Corona.’
Speaking exclusively to the ‘The Watchdog News’ Sqn Ldr (Dr.) Sinvhal said, “Jalvayu Vihar Sector A in Hiranandani Powai, is a CHS of 368 Residents. After hearing the Prime Ministers speech on 24th night, my first thought was how people will get their groceries during this lockdown. I immediately floated an idea of tying up with Big Bazaar around 10 pm on the society Google group (which I had created almost 8 years ago for members to interact in a transparent manner) and received good responses from members of my CHS. Overnight, the plan took shape and by the morning of 25th March a Google sheet was created and links shared with all members. Parallely, I also spoke to a senior professional working with Big Bazaar who liked the idea and assured help in making it a success. Meanwhile as Members queries started coming, I formed a WhatsApp group.”
“Four more Members Mrs (Dr.) Kamal Jadhav, Wg Cdr. Pai, Cdr. Anoop Verma, and Daksh Pasbola) volunteered to pitch-in and thus we became a core team of five members. We started fielding queries, speaking to Big Bazaar and requesting members to setup online payment app required by Big Bazaar. We continued to collate orders from 25 to 27 March while Big Bazaar got their act together for this new system. Finally, to our delight and relief, first delivery arrived on 28 March and post that daily deliveries are coming at least twice a day. More members are joining including tenants and now group has over 65 Members and increasing who are benefiting from this initiative.” Added Dr. Sinvhal
When asked by this correspondent of the exact model, Sqn Ldr (Dr.) Sinvhal said “That the model needs to be simple so everyone can use it easily even from their smartphone. We created a generic format with some guidelines for ordering and used online Google Sheet for members to place order. Daily morning post 9 am, the google sheet is copied into an excel file, and any doubt about any item is clarified with the member. By 10 am, the excel sheet is whatsApped to Big Bazaar order management team. They check stock status, take out the items as per order and generate invoice. Then the Payment team calls individual member and request for online payment using Google Pay or PhonePe. If a member doesn't have digital payment enabled, he contacts me and I make the payment on his behalf and member pays me later. This ensures that all orders are quickly paid so they can move to delivery stage.”
When asked about the delivery procedure Sqn Ldr. (Dr) Sinvhal said, “When Big Bazaar van starts from R-City, driver calls to alert us that he is on his way. Delivery is to CHS main gate. At least two core team members are available at main gate to attend to delivery van, inform the members whose orders have arrived and help them in taking delivery or accepting it on their behalf. Currently Big Bazaar is delivering twice a day to Jalvayu with this initiative. Members remain at home and don’t have to step out for delivery.”
“More and more are joining the WhatsApp group. We are happy that we are able to pitch in in these uncertain times. Furthermore, we have also setup ‘watch members’ who have a view towards the main roads. So if they notice any vegetable or fruit cart, immediately an alert is sent on WhatsApp group and interested members can go and buy the required items. Members were also informed of how to order medicines online using e-Pharama apps with up to 20% discounts," said Sqn Ldr Sinvhal signing off.
Our goal is simple. Enable delivery of all essentials to members in CHS so they are not forced to step out and risk their lives with the threat of deadly Covid strain. Only sad part is that as we all have our faces covered with mask, we may not be able to identify each other when the situation normalises, and we come across face to face. But then, Life’s like that and we love doing our bit. We are immensely greatful the Big Bazaar team led by Mr. Vaishuddin who made this happen.
For more information this ‘Corona Hero’ can be contacted on his mobile number: 9223323333 and email ID: email@example.com