PUNE - Bollywood star Aamir Khan, who leads NGO Paani Foundation, hopes Maharashtra is drought-free and doesn't need such a platform after the next five years. Set up in 2016 by the team of the TV series "Satyamev Jayate" -- which was led by Aamir -- the NGO aims to fight drought in rural Maharashtra by harnessing the power of communication to mobilise, motivate and train people in this mission.
Aamir on Friday visited the Symbiosis institute here to pin up call-to-action posters for students' participation in 'Shramdaan' (labour donation) across villages fighting against water scarcity and drought situations. The actor-producer was present with Pune Collector Naval Kishore, actor-director Girish Kulkarni and Satyajit Bhatkal, CEO of Paani Foundation, a statement said. "In five years from today, Maharashtra shouldn't be needing Paani Foundation. The more number of people join the cause, the bigger the movement will become. I believe it's the dream of us all that one day Maharashtra is drought-free and if we all dream of it, we all would have to do something about it to make it happen," Aamir said. He also stuck posters in the college, and urged students and urban citizens to become ‘Jalmitras', apart from taking to his Twitter account and tagging other celebrities like Sachin Tendulkar, Amitabh Bachchan, Alia Bhatt, Ranveer Singh, Rajkummar Rao, Swara Bhasker, Richa Chadha and Abhishek Bachchan to seek their participation. "The idea is that the information should reach a larger number of people," he said. On Maharashtra Day, which falls on May 1, the Paani Foundation will host a ‘Mahashramdaan', where citizens, both urban and rural, will meet and work together for water abundance. "Right now, we are still concentrating on the drought areas of rural Maharashtra. Once we feel that we have handled that, then we can move to cities," said Aamir, who feels encouraged to see how people in villages have few resources but have such high hopes in their hearts. "You realise that there is so much courage and beauty in the people of rural Maharashtra. It has been a very enriching experience."