When altruism took precedence over cinema
Several Malayalam celebrities have come forward to take part in relief operations across the state
Cinema is the last thing on everyone's minds when perilous floods are wreaking havoc and turning everything upside down. For the time being, the Malayalam film fraternity has put aside new releases and promotions to focus on matters of greater importance. Glitz and glamour could wait; it was time to set examples off-screen.
On the forefront was actor Tovino Thomas, who proved to be an inspiration for all by being part of the flood relief operations. He first opened the doors of his home to anyone in desperate need of shelter and carried the necessary supplies to relief camps. He also didn't forget to keep everyone updated on latest developments through his social media pages.
In a live video, the actor directed everyone to Christ College in Irinjalakuda, which was used as a collection point for items to be sent to other camps. He also urged everyone living in safe areas to come forward and assist those in danger areas.
The actor paid no heed to the rain water and dirt soiling his shirt, and braved the water-borne infections. He also saluted the army personnel and other rescue teams who spent hours and days in the polluted water. Tovino implored everyone to not spread fake news or hatred, and said he was proud of Keralities. He also thanked people from other states who were kind enough to send contributions irrespective of religion, caste and creed.
The actor said he doesn't need any special credit just because he is a movie star and that he is doing what everyone else would be doing in times of distress. In two separate videos, filmed over two consecutive days, he pointed to the rising water levels in some areas in his hometown and pleaded everyone to cooperate with rescue teams and evacuate from danger-prone areas. He also stressed the need for rehabilitation and taking the necessary medical precautions.
Among the other film personalities who took an active part in the relief effort were Indrajith and Poornima. The couple, along with a Kochi-based NGO called Anbodu Kochi, used the Regional Sports Center in Kadavanthara, Ernakulam as their base of operations. Anbodu Kochi collaborated with Ernakulam district administration to provide materials required for relief camps. The organisation had made it clear that they don't accept cash donations or used clothes.
Actors Jayasurya and Asif Ali also did their bit by directing everyone to send materials to a relief camp at Thammanam, Ernakulam. Volunteering with them was actor Sunny Wayne, who launched a campaign of his own. Sunny spent his birthday at a relief camp. In Kannur, singer Sayanora Philip formed a group called Kai Korthu Kannur for the purpose of collecting materials and sending them to various parts of Kerala.
Meanwhile, actor Rajeev Pillai postponed his wedding to give more priority to relief efforts in his region. Also making their contributions were actors Manju Warrier, Unni Mukundan, Vineeth Srinivasan, Rajisha Vijayan, Shamna Kasim, Thesni Khan, Samyuktha Menon, Rima Kallingal and Parvathy. And actor Amala Paul went out and bought some supplies herself, despite having one hand in a sling on account of a recent injury.