Imphal: In a first-of-its-kind initiative, a popular actor from Manipur has become a real-life hero in Punjab by launching a free COVID-19 vaccination drive for for people from Northeast India residing in Punjab.
Sushanta Rajkumar, popularly known as RK Sushant, started the vaccination drive with people living in Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali. The initiative was launched on Sunday to ensure that the people of Northeast staying in Punjab with limited access to information were vaccinated and safe.
Sushant was appointed as Manipur’s ‘Youth Icon’ for the state’s electoral awareness campaign because of his popularity among the youths.
Speaking about the vaccination drive, Sushant said, “After I shared the information about my family getting vaccinated on my YouTube channel to spread the message that it is safe and we should all get vaccinated, I started receiving messages from my followers and well-wishers. They were enquiring about information on how to get vaccinated.”
Sushant then realised that many were facing problems in getting vaccinated. “That is when I spoke with my family and friends to put together this drive to help my brothers and sisters from the Northeast,” he said.
“Having stayed in Punjab and Chandigarh for the last 20 years gave me certain advantages to organise the drive with the help of people I know there. I believe this is a time when we should all step up to help one another in whatever way we can to fight this pandemic. As someone blessed with so much love and support from the Northeast, this is my way of saying thanks to everyone,” added Sushant, who is also an international taekwondo champion.
The vaccination drive was successfully undertaken at the actor’s residential complex in Chandigarh with the support of an expert team of doctors and medical professionals from the Punjab health department.
Over 90 people contacted the actor, of which 40 from Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam in the age group of 18-44 years were vaccinated as part of the first phase. Sushant will be further coordinating with the state’s health department to vaccinate the remaining people in the subsequent phases.
After reviewing the responses and needs of the people, the Manipuri actor will be organising similar awareness and vaccination drives in other places across the country where people from the Northeast reside. The actor will also be sharing the details on his official social media platforms to keep his fans and well-wishers updated about the drive.