Vivek Oberoi helped raise about half a crore rupees for charity at an event in Bangalore for the benefit of flood victims of Karnataka. Says a source, "Last week, Vivek went to Bangalore as one of the honorary guests at a charity event and ended up raising funds for Project Punya Bhoomi. About 5,000 families lost their homes and today the government is rehabilitating them away from the flood-hit areas.
Due to his past association with charity work, VO was called in to support the event but ended up flagging off the auction. It was a spur of the moment decision when the actor bought a BKS Verma painting worth lakhs and kickstarted the auction. The money raised at the end of the event was Rs 52 lakh."
Says Vivek, "It was a gesture to inspire the people to donate. It feels good to be a catalyst in starting something so noble. I haven't visited Punya Bhoomi yet, but yes, upon completion of the project, I would love to see the look of joy on the faces of the 5,000 families who will finally have safe, pucca homes outside of the flooding zone in north Karnataka."
Vivek adds that he's also part of his mother's charity organisation -- the Yashodhara Oberoi Foundation. "YOF supports many genuine NGOs and causes like this one. Our principal focus right now, though, is on project Devi where we are focusing on the education and healthcare of marginalised poor women and children."
About playing the character of Riyaaz Masud in Karan Johar's Kurbaan, Vivek Oberoi states, "Riyaaz is a layered and challenging character. Before shooting, I read a lot on Islam in the modern world and interacted with a lot of young moderate Muslims. Riyaaz gave me a deeper understanding and respect for the Muslim youth of today. I learnt that Islam is a beautiful, peaceful and tolerant religion misunderstood and misrepresented at times."