International pop-superstar Rihanna became the talk of the town when she tweeted to draw the world’s attention towards the ongoing farmers’ protest in India. With just five little words, she managed to ruffle feathers and was soon trending on social media. While she is mostly being lauded for her efforts, some are criticising her too. But she is not the first star to speak up about various issues plaguing India. Here are other celebs who took the onus:
02/6Rihanna lends support to farmers’ protests
Rihanna highlighted the issue of farmers’ protests against disputed agricultural reforms taking place in India in a tweet. “Why aren’t we talking about this?!” Rihanna wondered, egging her 101 million followers to engage in a conversation over it. Following her tweet, the movement gained additional support from international activists, politicians, and celebrities. Rihanna’s question prompted Bollywood stars like Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn to speak up on the issue too.
Pic: Rihanna Instagram; Twitter
03/6Gal Gadot hails Shaheen Bagh’s Bilkis Dadi as her ‘Personal Wonder Woman’
Last December, ‘Wonder Woman’ Gal Gadot shared a photo of Shaheen Bagh’s Bilkis Dadi on Instagram Stories. As a part of the series where she posted photos of women who inspired her through the year, Gal ended 2020, captioning Bilkis Bano’s pic as ‘My Personal Wonder Woman’, adding, “This 82-year-old activist fighting for women’s equality in India showed me it’s never too late to fight for what you believe in”. Fondly known as ‘Bilkis dadi’, the 82-year-old activist was at the forefront of a protest rally.
Pic: Gal Gadot Instagram
04/6Leonardo DiCaprio shares concerns over the Chennai water crisis
Hollywood star and climate change activist, Leonardo DiCaprio made headlines when he expressed concern over the water crisis in Chennai in 2019. Sharing a distressing photo of people drawing water from a well, the Oscar-winner penned a lengthy note that read, “Only rain can save Chennai from this situation.” He went on to write about the plight of the people of the Southern Indian city while also sharing details of the initiatives being taken to deal with the crisis. “As the water levels depleted, hotels and restaurants started to shut down temporarily, and the air con was turned off in the city’s metro. Officials in the city continue to try and find alternative sources of water – but the community continue to pray for rain,” he wrote.
Photo: Leonardo DiCaprio Instagram
05/6John Cusack stands in solidarity with students protesting against CAA
At a time when Bollywood stars kept mum about the police brutality against students in Delhi during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, Hollywood actor John Cusack took to Twitter to condemn the police crackdown. In a series of tweets, Cusack was quite vocal in his criticism of the government while also supporting students and members of the Muslim community.
Photo: John Cusack Instagram; Twitter
06/6Matt Damon sheds spotlight on open defecation crisis
Oscar-winner and activist, Matt Damon has not only spoken about various issues but has also helped bring about a change. The actor, who is part of a non-profit organisation, has been instrumental in bringing about change in rural areas by providing people with means to safe drinking water and curb open defecation by providing sanitary toilets. His initiatives received a boost following the release of Akshay Kumar’s ‘Toilet: Ek Prem Katha’ that he hailed as an instrument of change.
Photo: Water.org; Instagram
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