The nationwide lockdown owing to the COVID-19 pandemic has brought many working sectors to a standstill. With film shootings being halted and no movie screenings in cinema halls, the film industry is also facing the brunt of this outbreak. Meanwhile, our Bollywood celebrities are doing their bit to help those heavily affected by COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest we hear is, Akshay Kumar has offered financial help to the owner of Mumbai's iconic single screen theatre, Gaiety-Galaxy to pay his staff amid the lockdown.
As per a Mid-day report, Manoj Desai, owner of the Mumbai cinema hall, had to take a bank loan to provide salaries to his employees amid the Novel Coronavirus lockdown. On reading about it, in a previous report of the same paper, Akshay called them and offered financial assistance.
Speaking about it, Manoj Desai told Mid-day, "Three days ago, I got a call from Akshayji. He offered to provide financial assistance if the scenario continues. It was kind of him to offer help, but we should find a way to sustain ourselves. We have managed to collect enough funds to pay the salaries for this month, but the theatre shutdown will have long-term ramifications. Our focus is to ensure we don't trim staff or resort to pay cuts."
He said that they would incur heavy losses when the lockdown ends in early May. After two weeks of lockdown, Manoj and business partner Arun Nair had decided to increase the ticket prices as soon as the cinemas re-opened. However, after the lockdown extension, recovering from a 45-day period, is going to be tough for them.
"I will head to Gaiety and Maratha Mandir today to finalise our plan of action for May. We are reworking our plans to ensure that we don't have to seek support from the industry folk," he further told the tabloid.
Akshay Kumar's Sooryavanshi was supposed to release on March 24. However, the film got postponed owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, the superstar was one of the most celebrities who donated to PM-CARES fund. He donated Rs 25 crore to the emergency fund for COVID-19 relief. Recently, he also contributed Rs 3 crore to the BMC, to provide personal protective equipments, masks and rapid-testing kits for healthcare and municipal workers.