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Telangana teacher who turned Covid hero

Telangana teacher who turned Covid hero

<p id="content">Wearing a helmet and facemask and carrying handwritten posters, this teacher of a government school has been pedaling around villages in Telangana's Khammam district for over six months to create awareness among people about the deadly Coronavirus.</p>
Ever since the pandemic broke out earlier this year and the lockdown imposed in March, Gollamandla Suresh Kumar has been cycling to remote villages in his district to educate people on how they can protect themselves by following simple precautions.

"Maintain cleanliness, keep your surroundings clean, always wear a face mask when going out and keep physical distance," he announces on megaphone while peddling around in the villages.

He has fixed to his bicycle posters with slogans in Telugu about the Covid-19 precautions. He has written slogans even on his helmet to send a message.

Leaving home early in the morning and covering 2-3 has been his routine for 190 days.

The 46-year-old is happy that he is doing his bit in the fight against Coronavirus. A teacher in Zilla Parishad High School in Peuvoncha village under Kallur mandal, he has so far covered over 250 villages.

He is continuing with his mission though the schools have re-opened this week after six months. "I am still covering a few villages while going to the school from Kallur and while returning home. September 23 was 190th day of my journey on bicycle against coronavirus," he said.

Suresh Kumar has been active in social work besides discharging his duties as a teacher. He had earlier hit the roads on his bicycle to create mass awareness about pollution, HIV and the ill-effects of smoking and liquor.

When Covid-19 broke out and even before the lockdown was imposed, Suresh Kumar was out on the streets with his 17-year-old bicycle to play his part. He felt that while authorities are doing their best to create mass awareness, there is a lot to be done and directly reaching out to people in villages with the message will be more effective.

He feels that addressing the villagers in their own language and taking the message to their doorsteps yield better results.

Suresh Kumar took risks to peddle amid the pandemic and braved scorching heat and rains. "I also cover habitations around containment zones, urging people to take all precautions," said the teacher, who is inspired by Mother Teresa.

Khammam is one of the Telangana districts that have witnessed surge in Covid cases for the last two months. The state has so far reported nearly 1.80 lakh cases and 1,070 deaths..