Yogi appoints Akshay Kumar the brand ambassador for UP’s cleanliness mission

The national award winning actor promised to proactively work towards making UP the open defecation free (ODF) state, a cause in line with the theme of his upcoming movie Toilet Ek Prem Katha. Chief minister also announced to make Toilet Ek Prem Katha tax free in UP.

lucknow Updated: Aug 04, 2017 15:14 IST
Deep Saxena
Deep Saxena
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Akshay Kumar,Yogi Adityanath,UP Government
Actor Akshay Kumar was appointed the brand ambassador of ‘Clean UP mission’ by chief minister Yogi Adityanath. (Dheeraj Dhawan/HT Photo)

Actor Akshay Kumar was appointed the brand ambassador of ‘Clean UP mission’ by chief minister Yogi Adityanath on Friday.

The national award winning actor promised to proactively work towards making UP the open defecation free (ODF) state, a cause in line with the theme of his upcoming movie Toilet Ek Prem Katha.

The actor, along with his co-star Bhumi Pednekar, was in Lucknow for Hindustan’s ‘UP Mein Swacchata Ka Shanknaad’ event at Millennium School.

The chief minister also announced to make the film tax-free in the state.

“Films should not just be made for entertainment. Our Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) says that the films should be made keeping in mind the society. It should have a positive message and inspire the society. For any such films, the Uttar Pradesh government will give full support and help,” said Adityanath.

Revealing that he hadn’t watch a film for 25 years now, Adityanath said he would like to watch this one with his ministers as it espouses a national cause.

The chief minister also announced to make ‘Toilet Ek Prem Katha’ tax-free in UP. (Dheeraj Dhawan/ HT Photo)

Akshay immediately offered to organise a special screening for UP ministers.

The chief minister also released the film’s toilet anthem, ‘Karle Toilet Ka Jugar’, which has been sung by the actor himself.

“I am very thankful to the UP chief minister who understood and realised the importance of our intent in making the film on Swachh Bharat Mission. We are delighted that our film has been made tax free in UP. I am also absolutely honoured at the suggestion of Yogiji to make me the brand ambassador of Uttar Pradesh. I have shot three films here and I am very fond of the state,” Akshay told Hindustan Times,

Earlier, the chief minister along with other actors administered oath of cleanliness to school students.

They pledged to devote at least two days in a week on cleanliness and further inspire others to join the mission.

Akshay revealed that movie was initially titled ‘Sandas - Ek Prem Katha’ but the script found no takers for four years. (Dheeraj Dhawan/HT Photo)

Adityanath, Akshay and Bhumi also took up the broom and cleaned a part of the school’s sprawling lawn.

The CM also praised Hindustan Times group, Akshay and his team to become the first movers to join the Swachh Bharat Mission on a mass level.

Yogi said, “The state is committed to make villages alongside Ganga open defecation free (ODF). We have a mission to make 30 districts ODF by December 31 and the entire state by October 2, 2018.”

He gave the example of eastern UP where water and vector-borne diseases have claimed several lives.

“I recently read somewhere that a village with 60 families had no toilet when 40 amongst them had a car,” said the CM while exhorting people to themselves take a lead in ensuring cleanliness.

In a reply to Hindustan’s editor-in-chief Shashi Shekhar’s question on political cleaning, the CM said it was an ongoing process and after the assessment the government has gone into action mode and the results had started showing.

On the film’s plot, Akshay revealed that movie was initially titled ‘Sandas - Ek Prem Katha’ but the script found no takers for four years.

“When I read it, the title fascinated me. During research we came to know that 54% population don’t use toilet. So we decided to make the film which is inspired by a true incident. This is not a documentary nor are we preaching. It is an entertainment movie with a message of cleanliness,” he said.

First Published: Aug 04, 2017 15:14 IST