The mega theatrical launch of award winning short film Hawa Badlo supported by GAIL (India) Limited, was held at PVR Cinemas, Lower Parel in Mumbai. Actors Vivek Oberoi and Swara Bhaskar were present during the launch event along with director Karmik Varma and Milind Bharambe, Joint Commissioner of Mumbai Police.
Bollywood celebrities Vivek Oberoi, Kalki Koechlin, Swara Bhaskar, Vir Das and Govind Namdev recently pledged to support #GiftAMask campaign, a part of the HawaBadlo movement, aimed at bettering the lives of traffic policemen by sensitivising public at large and creating awareness about air pollution and promoting the usage of greener fuel like CNG.
To drive the message home, these actors came together in a hard hitting short film that makes you question your conduct towards traffic cops. Made by iKarmik – a media house, the Hawa Badlo short film is a part of an ongoing social awareness campaign initiated by SCVPL.
Due to its effective message, Hawa Badlo has won the Best Short Film On Social Issues Award at the recently held International Film Festival of Prayag international Delhi. The film has been shot in collaboration with GAIL (India) Limited which has gifted 10,000 respirator masks to traffic police in Mumbai through Vivek Oberoi’s One Foundation. Also present were two traffic cops and their families who were gifted masks by the celebrities and Ms. Vandana Chanana of GAIL (India) Limited.
Says Vandana Chanana, Executive Director, CSR, GAIL (India) Limited, “We all can observe the rising pollution onsequences in our daily lives and if we don’t start changing our approach towards the problem, we would soon find ourselves in a very tough situation. Natural Gas is the one of the best solutions to stop India from inching towards catastrophic consequences. Usage of natural gas, the cleanest burning fossil fuel curbs carbon emission by 30 percent and till we don’t have sustainable infrastructure and technical capability to support renewable energy on an industrial scale, natural gas is our best bet to bridge today with a sustainable future.”
JCP Milind Bharambe, Mumbai Police made a valid observation when he said, “The (Police) department keeps taking many initiatives for the health betterment of our cops. But when such a gesture of care and sensitivity comes from the civil society, it sends a very important message of great rapport existing between law enforcers and public at large.”
Vivek Oberoi shared a fantastic story. He said that he has taught his 4 year old son to salute every cop he sees on the road. “Don’t see traffic cops just as a traffic equipment. They have families, they are real people too, they put their lives at risk to make yours easier. Rain or sunshine, public holidays, festivals, pollution levels being high, they continue doing their job without complaining. All they need is respect and sensitivity.”
Swara Bhaskar went on record to make a candid confession. “I have been fined many times in Mumbai and Delhi and I was actually a part of many of those who didn’t care much about traffic cops. But when I read the script I had a moment of change. That’s how I became of a part of this entire initiative.”
Said Nipun Arora, Founder, SCVPL, “Traffic Cops are the worst victims of pollution and it is a matter of great pride that we did our bit towards their well being; but we can not stop here. The alarming hike in the pollution levels is seriously harmful for everyone and the sad part is that the issue lacks the attention that it deserves.”
To sum it all up, Karmik Varma, the writer and director of Hawa Badlo said, “Traffic cops do their job with a lot of pride and honour. They don’t need our sympathy. They only want respect and sensitivity. That’s the least we can do for the risks they take daily to make our lives better.”
The film will be played as public service message across select cinemas in India. One can join the movement by logging on to m.me/hawabadlo or by giving a missed call to 080 67 33 55 34.