The number of casualties in flood-and-rain-ravaged Uttarakhand is feared to be in thousands, and thousands more are still stranded, making this one of the biggest national tragedies in recent times. Assistance has, of course, poured in from different quarters. And now, Bollywood personalities have also come forward to lend a helping hand.
Be it in kind or cash, they are striving to do their bit. “A lot needs to be done for the people who have suffered there,” says actor Ravi Kissen, who is planning to “organise some shows” in Dehradun to aid victims through the NGO, Goonj.
We take a look at some of the efforts.
Sonakshi, Shatrughan Sinha and family
Sonakshi’s father, Shatrughan Sinha, runs a charity organisation called Prayas. Now, we have been informed that the Sinha family, especially her actor-politician father has volunteered to donate Rs. 50 lakh towards the rehabilitation of the flood-affected victims.
“The family was distressed about the flood. So they immediately decided to make the contribution,” says an insider close to them. Although Sinha Sr is believed to have taken the initiative, Sonakshi insists they “are together” with their father on this.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui, actor
While growing up, Nawazuddin spent a number of years in the hills of Uttarakhand (around Dehradun). And now, the actor, whose extended family is still settled in the capital city, will travel there towards the end of this month. “I’m going either on June 29 or 30. My brothers are already doing what they can. I don’t want to reveal much, but I have plans to assist the victims in whatever way possible — with money or otherwise. I grew up around the region; this is the least I can do,” says Nawaz.
Bhushan Kumar, producer
A few days ago, reports revealed that T-Series head honcho Bhushan Kumar’s mother, Sudesh Kumari, was on a pilgrimage in Uttarakhand. She was reported missing and was untraceable for a few days. Although she is home now, Kumar has decided to do his bit. “I don’t want to talk about it openly. Since my mother has just gone through it, I can understand the trauma the victims must be going through,” says Bhushan.
Juhi Chawla, Dia Mirza, Anupam Kher, Ravi Kissen; actors
Anupam Kher has donated R1,11,000 to the NGO, Goonj. “It’s from the Anupam Kher Foundation so that children can be provided with food, clothes and shelter,” Anupam says. Ravi Kissen is sending medicines and food to the victims through the same NGO. “We will send around 25 kg of biscuits right now,” says the actor. Also contributing through Goonj are Juhi Chawla and Dia Mirza. “I will be making a contribution through the NGO,” says Dia. Juhi has sent a 100 blankets to the Breach Candy club that is collecting items to send to Uttarakhand in association with the above-mentioned NGO.
SRK and Akki raising crores?
Fans of actors Shah Rukh Khan (above) and Akshay Kumar (below) on Tuesday started spreading word that the two had made generous donations towards Uttarakhand victims. While it was reported that Akki had made a donation of R20cr, buzz was that SRK has donated R10cr. Later, however, people tweeted that the news was false and the two actors hadn’t donated. While Akki’s publicist said that the actor was in London and she wasn’t aware of the donation, SRK's spokes-person remained unavailable for comment.