Om Puri praises Nana for farmer welfare initiatives

Mumbai: Actor Om Puri has praised fellow actor Nana Patekar’s initiatives to help the distressed farmers in the country, but said a lot more needs to be done for their welfare.

“People, in their personal capacity, have made a contribution, like Nana Patekar, and there are others as well. Nana not just provided financial help, he even embraced the farmers and shed tears with them, consoled them.”

Puri said it is still like putting a drop into the ocean. “This should be thought about very seriously, not just by the government but also us people,” Puri said at the trailer and poster launch of the film ‘Project Marathwada’.

It was reported that Patekar had given financial help to more than 100 drought-affected families in Maharashtra in August last year and later set up his own foundation – Naam Foundation – for the cause. The foundation has been working hard for the cause since then.

Puri plays a farmer in Marathwada – one of the worst drought-affected areas – in the film. He threatens to commit suicide and catches the government’s attention, after his son commits suicide due to financial troubles caused by drought.

About his preparation for the role, he said: “It’s been 60 years of acting for me. We know about the farmers’ issues as you read about the same in newspapers, see it on TV… you see farmers talking about it; so I didn’t have to do any preparation. My only preparation was to grow my beard a bit.”

He also advocated water conservation. “We should utilise water better. Where water is more, we should divert it and create small rivers, just like we’re making roads to connect villages and cities.”

‘Project Marathwada’ also stars Govind Namdeo, Dalip Tailp, Seema Biswas among others.