Cinema has the potential to influence the society. And it is also true that films (with their wide reach) and actors (with their influence), can be of great help to start a conversation that is important to bring about a positive change in the country and society. Akshay Kumar is one of the few actors who have realised this potential and possibility of a better tomorrow. He is doing his bit through two of his upcoming films. Also Read - Chehre Release Date Out: Emraan Hashmi-Amitabh Bachchan Starrer To Release in April, But Why is Rhea Chakraborty Missing?
Akshay Kumar – Bhumi Pednekar starrer Toilet Ek Prem Katha is all set to hit screens tomorrow (August 11). The film brings in focus the lack of proper, basic sanitation amenities for a large number of Indians. There are myths, archaic belief systems, lack of awareness and financial constraints that ail the situation. Akki’s next film, Padman again deals with an important issue – it talks about the poor state of menstrual hygiene facilities and awareness amongst rural women. Also Read - Dadasaheb Phalke Awards: Sushant Singh Rajput Honoured With Critic's Best Actor For His Contribution To Hindi Cinema
While he is high on taking up subjects that are crucial for the nation, I would really love him to do a film that highlights the drought situation in the country. The issue is far graver than what most Indians realize and a film on the same might be able to bring the necessary attention to the matter. Yes, Aamir Khan has already taken up the cause through Satyamev Jayate Water Cup under Paani foundation. But I have another important issue in mind for him. Also Read - 'Haath Dho Le..': Mumbai Police Picks Amitabh Bachchan’s Agneepath Scene to Share Covid Message | Watch
According to a 2016 report, about 330 million Indians (that’s a quarter of the country’s population) across 10 states are hit by drought. The figures were presented to the Supreme Court by a senior government lawyer, PS Narasimha.
Shah Rukh Khan in a still from the song Safar – Jab Harry Met Sejal
Shah Rukh Khan: Apart from his charm onscreen and wit off it, Shah Rukh Khan is known for his oratory skills. Pick up any of his press conferences and you’ll know that this Khan is well read. He is an avid reader and has always harped on how reading is a habit every individual should inculcate. He also ensured that his kids develop a love for reading by introducing them to the world of books very early in life, as shared by the superstar in his various interviews. Not just this, he’s also made sure that they first complete their education before getting into cinema, if at all they choose to. SRK is my choice for a film on the issue of illiteracy in the country. A film that highlights the current situation; creates awareness and influences people to make educating their kids a priority, for a better tomorrow! ALSO READ: This Pakistani Actress Watched Jab Harry Met Sejal And Her Reaction Will Make Shah Rukh Khan, Anushka Sharma’s Day!
As per the 2005 Global Education Monitoring Report that takes into consideration the 2001 census data, India has the largest number of illiterate population in the world at 34%. China at 11% has the second largest.
Ranveer Singh: The actor who will next been seen in Padmavati, is one of the fittest stars in Bollywood today! The actor is known for his transformations and for his beefed up look that he has acquired for his role of the menacing Allauddin Khilji in the magnum opus. There is a strict diet involved here too. Who better than Ranveer Singh to promote the idea of wellness and proper nutrition? Malnutrition is a severe issue in India and the lack of proper diet has proved fatal for many over the years. It is not just the dearth of money to buy food but ignorance about a proper diet that ails the issue in the country. ALSO READ: Ranveer Singh Forcefully Entered Bhumi Pednekar’s Toilet And Here’s What Happened Next
World Bank data indicates that 44% of children in India, under the age of 5 are underweight and 72% of infants have anemia (iron deficiency). Nobel Laureate and Economist Angus Deaton pointed out that malnutrition in India is a result of a low protein, low fat and high carbohydrate diet.
Aamir Khan in a still from Dangal
Aamir Khan: In his last outing, Dangal, Aamir Khan prophesied about women empowerment. Through his film, he tried to highlight how women are no less than men and are equally, if not more, physically strong. The actor would be my pick to do a movie that talks about how women can be trained to be self dependent when it comes to their safety. All the feminist talk aside, we cannot wait for men to come and save us; or for the government to take stringent action; or for the zillion eve teasers /potential molesters and rapists lurking in the dark alleys of the country to reform! Women will be safe only once they know how to protect themselves! The film should also talk about making women self reliant when it comes to their financial health. You will be shocked that most reported cases of crimes against women are of cruelty by husbands and relatives. ALSO READ: While Everyone Is Excited For Sara Ali Khan And Jhanvi Kapoor’s Bollywood Debut, Aamir Khan’s Son Junaid Quietly Makes His Acting Debut
As per National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data till 2015, crimes against women have increased 34 percent in the last four years. These include attempt to commit rape, abetment of suicide by women and protection of women from domestic violence. The numbers only takes into consideration the cases that have been reported. The actual numbers would be beyond our imagination.
Amitabh Bachchan: The stalwart is someone who is taken seriously by the young and the old alike. While one generation has grown up watching his films; there is the other that has witnessed his flawlessness – be it acting, hosting, his speeches, or his writing. The superstar commands respect like no other! Even at his age, he continues to attract footfalls to the theatres. There is little surprise then that he fits perfectly in a film that talks about Air Pollution. A subject that we all are aware of and are still ignorant of! The repercussions are far more devastating than we can imagine. ALSO READ: Is Amitabh Bachchan’s 75th Birthday Really Going To Be A Grand One? Read His Tweet
According to Greenpeace’s report titled ‘Airpocalypse’ from January 2017, air pollution kills as many as 12 lakh people every year. The report based on air quality in 168 cities across 24 states and Union Territories in India, claims that none of the 168 cities meet the air quality standards prescribed by the World Health Organization (WHO).
While our romance dramas, action thrillers and extravagant period sagas are all welcome, Bollywood films can help us go a long way by taking up matters that really matter for the country. I can only hope that films like Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Padman and Sui Dhaga- Made In India, only pave the way for more filmmakers and actors to showcase important, burning issues in films that can act as an aid to an ailing India.