Restaurateur offers free food to boost vaccine drive

Chicken briyani and teh O are given free to restaurant customers who complete two doses of Covid-19 vaccine until July 4. Photo: Bernama

Popular restaurant chain in Penang, Sri Ananda Bahwan is joining the cause to help increase registrations for the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (PICK) by offering free meals to those who have completed two doses of vaccines.

Sri Ananda Bahwan Group director Veera Harikrishnan said the promotion, from 11am to 2pm from June 28 to July 4, runs at all of its 13 outlets where customers who have completed their vaccination would be able to redeem the restaurant’s signature and best-selling chicken biryani meal for free.

He said redemption for the free meal would only be valid once and the restaurant operator has put in place a system to register those who have redeemed their meal.

“For the past two days, since we ran this promotion, response from our customers has been overwhelming. We have distributed close to 500 packs of free meals so far and we will be doing this promotion from time to time.

“We hope this promotion will help encourage and incentivise the public to register for Covid-19 vaccination because according to government statistics, only about 76 percent of Penangites have registered so far. There are still many others who have not registered through MySejahtera,” he told Bernama. 

He also hoped that other restaurants would follow suit and offer this kind of promotion to help increase the people’s confidence and create awareness on the importance of vaccination.

One of the restaurant’s frequent customers, Indran Rengasamy, 76, said this promotion is a good encouragement for everyone to get vaccinated and he was thrilled to be treated to a free meal after having completed his two doses of vaccination on May 17.

While the response for the immunisation programme is getting better now compared with when it was first rolled out, he said, however, the number of Indians registering for vaccination was not that high.

“I think they are scared because they have been reading a lot of horror stories that were spread on messaging applications. There are rarely truths to these stories and all the vaccines available in Malaysia are good for everyone.

“If not, I am sure the government would not waste their resources to introduce this programme in such a big scale. I encourage everyone to get registered because your life is in your hands and this is for your own benefit,” said the retiree who hails from Bayan Baru. – Bernama