Dev Dutta is a name a lot of people in Silchar would associate with professional photography. Indeed, Dev Dutta is a skilled and proven photographer with a plethora of clients. However, there are other shades to Dev Dutta as well. During the pandemic, Dev Dutta has come forward to offer help to the hundreds of Covid patients whose lives haven’t been so easy lately. Dev Dutta has been trying to make things easier for them, at least on one front. He has been providing free home delivery of medicines in Silchar.
Dev Dutta, apart from being a professional photographer is also a qualified and registered pharmacist. He has a Bachelors in Pharmaceuticals from Assam University. Recently, he set up his medicine outlet by the name Medcart in Itkhola, Silchar. Though sales are only retail for now, Dev Dutta has plans to launch an app soon. The launch of the app actually got delayed because of the pandemic, he said. However, the store is still operating via phone calls and WhatsApp also.
Usually, people who reach out to him are individuals who work outside Silchar but have parents living in Silchar. They call or message him to place orders and Dev Dutta then delivers the said medicines at their doorstep while charging nothing extra for the home delivery. Almost every patient they have delivered to has so far been a Covid patient. They take adequate safety precautions too.
Dev Dutta has just one individual with him at his store to run the operations and delivery. While it is usually Dev Dutta himself who goes out to make deliveries, he added that his staff also does the delivery at times. They usually try to complete the delivery in an hour or so. So far, Dev Dutta has completed at least 200 such deliveries in the last 3 months or so. Their daily orders now range anywhere between 5 and 20.
Though their services are currently limited to just Silchar, if and when they receive orders from the neighbouring areas, Dev Dutta still tries his best to arrange the medicines for them, either by communicating with a pharmacy in that locality or by sending it with someone going that way. Though Dev Dutta has a minimum order price of 300 rupees to manage the costs, he still drops cheaper orders if he is headed that way.
On being asked as to where he got such a well-intended idea from, he said it was something that just happened. Some of his friends from outside Silchar called him to drop some medicines at their houses in the town and that is how it all began. He then just scaled it up to serve the larger public of Silchar.
In the midst of all this, there have been some funny incidents too. Some people called him thinking he was giving away free medicines. He had to clarify that it was only the delivery that was free of cost. Some people even sent him grocery lists, so he had to explain that he is running a pharmacy. Some people even had the sense of entitlement to ask for 30 minute deliveries as if it were a pizza joint. But, Dev Dutta has been looking to help those on the weaker end of the financial spectrum by providing discounts if feasible.
Dev Dutta says the feedback has been overwhelming. People are showering blessings on him. In fact, a lady called to tell him that even her relatives wouldn’t help out her Corona infected parents, but he was. So, Dev Dutta feels that people are satisfied. They have been placing recurring orders. Many new relationships have also been built, he says.
When asked about whether he had a message for people, he said everyone should just stay home and stay safe. If anyone needs medicines, Dev Dutta’s Medcart is at service.