Rana Daggubati Makes a Real Difference in Chennai Relief Operations

By Joyline Rego

Chennai Airport submerged during December 2015 Tamil Nadu flood.jpg
"Chennai Airport submerged during December 2015 Tamil Nadu flood" by Indian Air Force. Licensed under Attribution via Commons.

Mumbai, Dec 10 (Washington Bangla Radio) - A NASA report on the extreme rainfall from two unnamed slow moving tropical low depressions and resultant severe flooding in southern India measured rainfall accumulation in excess of 550 mm (21.7 inches) drenching India's southeastern coast in the state of Tamil Nadu, and rainfall totals of over 200 mm (7.9 inches) in large areas of southeastern India and northern Sri Lanka; and this was before two days of more rain kept falling. Chennai has been left reeling.

Though the rain has stopped, devastation has scarred the lives of survivors. Help and support is pouring in, and folks from the gigantic Indian film industry have not hesitated to come forward either.

Actor Rana Daggubati is a personal witness of the catastrophe. “As the sky begins to turn dark, I can sense the fear in voices of all volunteers that I am in touch with. It's very tough to get a visual understanding of what's actually happening in those areas. Just imagine water all over the place, breached sewage, contaminated water and dead animals. People have no choice but to move around in that. An epidemic can break out any minute in such situations.”

Daggubati is coordinating with several teams helping in the relief work and arranging for supplies. A visit to Ramanaidu Studios in the past week saw the actor, his colleagues and volunteers working to get supplies to the affected areas as soon as possible.

“No power supply, scarcity of food, water and clothes has created chaos in those areas. Cooking stations have been set up at every possible place to provide food.” said Daggubati.

His team is coordinating with other relief teams from Chennai. Team Siddharth and RJ Balaji, Team Dhanush and Aishwarya, Team Vishal, Arya and Karthik and a Disaster Management Team are allocating all the funds based on requirements.

“We have huge trucks with high load capacities, but the problem is that they cannot reach some areas and that is the reason we are sending trucks of different capacities depending on where we have to send it,” adds the actor.

It might take hours to load each truck, but Daggubati tells us the necessity is so high that distribution finishes in minutes. “Dhanush, who is helping out a team of nearly 1,200 doctors with supplies, tells me a truck which took two hours to load was used up in six minutes. I can't explain to you how desperate the situation is. Demand is unimaginably higher than supply.”

Daggubati has initiated a campaign 'Mana Madras Kosam' (For Our Madras) along with other actors. He has not only made a separate account which anybody from anywhere can send money to under his grandfather's trust ,but has actually gone on to ensure that the supplies of food, clothes, medicines and other essentials reach the people in need.

Daggubati family-owned Ramanaidu Studios has become the drop-off point for relief essentials which are packed and trucked to the city.

Money can be transferred through Ramanaidu Charitable Trust (Ramanaidu Charitable Trust, Acct: 18090200000113, Bank Of Baroda, Jubilee Hills Branch, IFSC Code. BARBOJUBILE) in Hyderabad.