Chiranjeevi donated Rs. 1 crore to the daily wage workers in the Telugu film industry and others too have stepped up.

Film fraternity comes forward to help daily wage workers in Tollywood
Flix Coronavirus Friday, March 27, 2020 - 15:49

Waking up to the crisis looming large in the film industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Telugu film fraternity has started contributing to those who are dependent on daily wages in Tollywood.  

On Thursday, while some stars announced their donations to the Chief Minister's relief fund, actor Chiranjeevi announced that he is donating Rs 1 crore to the daily wage earners in the film industry.

In his latest tweet, he said, “The lockdown situation while mandatory to deal with the Corono crisis also adversely impacts the lives of daily wage workers and lower income groups in the country including the Telugu film industry. Keeping this in mind, I am donating Rs.1 crore for providing relief to the film workers.”

Actor Jeevitha Rajasekhar and her family are also providing basic needs like essential groceries to the families of the daily wage earners in the industry. This includes 10 kgs of rice, 2 kgs of kandipappu (dal), 2 kgs of wheat flour, oil, sugar, red chilli powder, salt, tea powder, pickles and other items. As of now, about 250 to 300 people have reportedly collected the groceries from the family.

Speaking to TNM, Jeevitha said that the family has given a mobile number to the workers to be passed on to anyone in need of groceries. “We have not put up any designated place as it would result in people gathering and disrupting social distancing. Sometimes, they distribute groceries at the Film Chamber or the film production managers' office, and sometimes workers come and collect the items from our home," she said.

Meanwhile, team Naandhi,  on behalf of Allari Naresh and his producer, Satish Vegesna, have reached out to their unit members which includes drivers, light men and all assisting staff of around 50 members, who are dependent on their daily pay. As these people are the most affected, they are being compensated with Rs.10,000 in advance per person for their lost pay days.   

Team Naandi, in their official statement said, “In times such as this when humanity is put to its toughest test, it's our duty to reach out and hold each other up.”

Allari Naresh in a video appreciated those who have instructed their domestic workers not to come, and has also appealed to people to give them paid leave since this would be their only source of income. 

Several other celebrities from the industry are also contributing in different ways. It is estimated that there are about 20,000 workers in the industry who are dependent on daily wages. It has been close to 10 days since film shootings stopped across the country. With this, several lower income groups in the industry are struggling to meet their daily needs.

There are also meetings being held at the Film Chamber to decide the course of action regarding the daily wage workers and other issues, as the lockdown is going to continue till April 16 in Telangana with the number of coronavirus positive cases on  the rise. As of now, there are 43 active cases in the state, as per the data provided by the Ministry of Public Health and Family Welfare, Telangana.