Akshay Kumar is unhappy. No, it’s not his Bollywood career that has been giving him trouble, but rather something far more deep — the state of youngsters in the country. “We’re not naturally oriented towards outdoor activities. Most youngsters prefer to stroll in malls and sit around in restaurants rather than sweat it out in the open,” rues the actor.
It is to combat exactly this problem that Akki is toiling to make the Open Invitational Karate Tournament, which he started last year, bigger and better. The martial arts tournament, scheduled between October 28 and 31 at Mumbai’s Andheri Sports Complex, has attracted over 3,000 contenders.
“It gives me the platform to realise my passion for promoting sports,” he says.
The idea originated when he was watching his son, Aarav, train under instructor Shihan Mehul Vora. “When Akshay heard that there were many kids keen to participate in a competition, but unable to afford it, he decided to initiate the tournament,” reveals a friend of the actor.
A new man
The actor is also busy shooting for film-maker Farah Khan’s Tees Maar Khan and Katrina Kaif’s item number, Sheela Ki Jawani, from the film has become a rage. Asked if he wishes he was a part of the song, too, and he says, “How do you know I’m not in it? Wait and watch.”
He adds that he’s happy to have Salman Khan on board, in a special appearance song with him and Kaif. “Salman is a friend and his participation will only enhance our film.”
The actor concedes that his criteria for selecting films have changed since he won the Padma Shri last year: “The national honour urges me to excel in whatever I do. I’ve become more responsible as an actor”.