Sonu Sood is famous for his villainous roles in Bollywood movies but in real life he is a hero to many poor and needy people. Immediately following the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020, the actor stepped up to help poor labourers, daily bets and factory workers, who faced huge hardship amid the nationwide lockdown.
He not only arranged transportation for hundreds of thousands of stranded migrant workers and students to help them get home, but he also provided employment and financial assistance to many. He went out of his way to make sure he could help as many people as possible.
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) awarded him the SDG Special Humanitarian Award for the initiatives he and his team took during the first wave of the pandemic putting their own lives at risk.
As the actor celebrates his birthday today, let’s use this day to shed some light on the humanitarian aid he’s provided to thousands of people across the country.
Provided his Mumbai hotel to doctors
During the nationwide lockdown in March 2020, a large number of medical staff and doctors had to work overtime to save lives. Doctors, nurses and other medical staff could not even go to their homes for fear of spreading Covid-19 infections. Thus, Sonu Sood decided to open the doors of his hotel in the Juhu district of Mumbai to welcome health workers.
Shakti Annadanam diagram
Many people could not afford proper meals as the lockdown led to job losses and a crisis in food availability. Sonu then decided to launch a campaign to feed the hungry. He established Shakti Annadanam in memory of his late father, Shakti Sagar Sood, with the aim of providing food to at least 45,000 people in Mumbai every day.
Helping day laborers get home safely
There was no public transport available during the lockdown. As a result, hundreds of thousands of daily workers have been stranded in their workplaces. They started walking for miles to reach the houses. However, the actor couldn’t see them suffering anymore and stepped in to offer his help. He and his team ensured that the migrants, who contacted them, returned home.
Also, when Sonu learned that a group of Indian students had been stranded in Kyrgyzstan, he arranged a chartered flight to airlift them and helped them get home safely.
Pravasi Rojgar Employment Program
Sonu Sood launched the “Pravasi Rojgar” platform to help migrant workers find work. Not only did it provide jobs, but it also provided housing for workers.
Professor Saroj Sood Scholarships for Higher Education
Sonu Sood has also launched a scholarship program for students pursuing higher education. Sonu kept the name of the scholarship after his late mother, Professor Saroj Sood. “I believe that financial challenges should not stop anyone from reaching their full potential,” he wrote on his Instagram account when the scholarship was announced.
(Edited by : Priyanka Deshpande)