IIFA presents charity proceeds to kin of late film technicians

MUMBAI: Here is one charity event where stars are sure that aid has reached the needy.

Rs 1.2 million - proceeds from the Samsung IIFA Charity Cricket Match held at Johannesburg in May 2003 - was given to four families who lost family members to accidents during the making of Bollywood films.

The match has already being aired on MAX as a part of the IIFA Weekend 2003.

Conceptualized by Wizcraft International Entertainment, the Samsung IIFA Charity Cricket Match, was held on 15 May 2003 at the Centurion Grounds in Johannesburg, South Africa and formally kicked off celebrations at the IIFA Weekend and formed a precursor to the Samsung IIFA Awards 2003. The event in that was scheduled to be a star-studded event, boasted the presence of the who's who of the Indian film Industry but the turn out was poor. Barring Fardeen Khan and Shakti Kapoor there were no stars from the industry. They gave away the checks to John D'souza and Shivkami Gandhi Pujari. While actor Anil Kapoor's seceratary Upadhyay picked up the checks for the remaining two, who incidentally happened to be maimed or have lost their lives during making of his movies.

Both Suman Chandla, wife of late Rakesh Chandia who expired of a heart attack white shooting for the film Armaan , and Paramjeet Kaur mother of production assistant Tejinder Singh Mathi who was paralysed during shooting of Badhai ho Badhai, were unable to make it to the function.

On behalf of his mother Rachel Francis D'souza, her son John was present to accept the check. His father late Francis D'Souza, a lightman, had expired of a heart attack in Ladakh while shooting for Line of Control. While Shivkami Gandhi Pujari, wife of late Veera Swami Gandhi was present with two young kids in tow. Gandhi, a lightman in the movie Line of Control's unit had passed away of a heart attack in Ladakh while shooting. The families who were skeptic till they received the checks finally had a new future to look forward for.

Speaking to, well-known film actor Shakti Kapoor said: "Behind the scene workers do not really have a stable source of income. While in Hollywood, the lives of such technicians are insured, here unfortunately there is no such assurance. Since these people are often the breadwinners of the family, after their deaths due to mishaps during shooting, their families are reduced to penury. It is heartening to know that we stars along with IIFA can help the families in some way."

During the match held earlier, three teams led by Anil Kapoor, Venkatesh and Suniel Shetty battled it out on the cricket field for a cause. The cricket match saw members of Team Samsung, Harbhajan Singh, Dinesh Mongia, Zaheer Khan and Mohammed Kaif play opposite the Indian film industry stars. The stars who played included Salman Khan, Arbaaz Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Aftab Shivdasani, Abhishek Bachchan, Zayed Khan, Shakti Kapoor, Chunky Pandey, Fardeen Khan, Dino Morea, Madhur Bhandarkar and Sanjay Kapoor. Directors abd producers like Apoorva Lakhia, Mahesh Manjrekor and David Dhawan, along with Sony CEO Kunal Dasgupta, were also members of the cricket team.

Besides Samsung IIFA Charity Cricket Match RNA Mirage Builders' Anubhav Agarwal donated three flats, providing aid to the behind the scenes workers of Indian cinema including technicians, light boys and assistants. Samsung India, Gili Jewels, Sony Entertainment Television and Venky's Chicken also contributed for the cause.

Apart from the bereaved families the other beneficiary of the charity match proceeding is South Africa's 'Northern Cricket Union Development Programme', who have already received a part of the proceeds.

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