Celebrities Everywhere Have Donated to Coronavirus Relief. Where Are India’s Stars?


Celebrities Everywhere Have Donated to Coronavirus Relief. Where Are India’s Stars?

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

Coronavirus has gripped the world with over 5,00,000 cases worldwide and many countries in a state of complete lockdown. While the focus has been on improving healthcare infrastructure and making sure the warriors on the frontline of this battle have the necessary equipment, many celebrities and sports people worldwide have chipped in with generous donations to accelerate the efforts.

Singer Rihanna donated $5 million to fight the coronavirus through her foundation.

Swiss tennis star Roger Federer donated one million Swiss francs to the families suffering from coronavirus in Switzerland. Indeed, the GOAT.

Power couple Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds also made a generous $1 million contribution for coronavirus relief.

These announcements by global celebrities have left social media users in India wondering why desi celebrities haven’t yet come forward to help generously.

Indian captain Virat Kohli has been under fire on social media, with many comparing him to other sportsmen who have made hearty contributions.

Some even pointed out that the Forbes “Richest Sportperson of India” should do more.

While many celebrities came out to their balconies to clap and cheer for our healthcare workers, few have gone beyond the symbolism and helped with concrete actions.

The Khans of Bollywood have also been questioned on their inaction.

Akshay Kumar can definitely star as a saviour in a movie on the Coronavirus but when will the staunch nationalist also loosen his purse strings for the nation, social media users have asked.

Megastar Amitabh Bachchan who is often vocal on social issues has also been criticised (not only for the lack of donation, but also for his unscientific views).

While everyone expects more from our celebrities and cricketers, some have stood up. Gautam Gambhir has contributed ₹50 lakh – but from his MPLAD fund, which is basically taxpayers’ money – whereas the Pathan brothers have donated face masks and Shikhar Dhawan has contributed to the Prime Minister’s relief fund.

Ace shuttler PV Sindhu announced a donation of ₹5 lakh each to the Andhra Pradesh and Telangana chief minister’s relief fund.

Thalaivar Rajinikanth donated ₹50 lakh to workers of Film Employees Federation of South India, who will lose their livelihood due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar led by example, donating ₹50 lakh to fight Covid-19, so far the biggest contributions among India’s leading sportpersons.

In India, we have a tradition of following our Gods. Hopefully, Sachin will inspire more celebrities to come forward and help.