Akshay Kumar’s recent super-hit, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha deals with open defecation in India and Matt Damon has praised the movie for the message it portrays.
The Jason Bourne actor is the co-founder of the charity Water.org, a non-profit organisation which also addresses the issue of open defecation and has been doing so for years.
In an exclusive conversation with Hindustan Times, Damon expressed his joy for Toilet: Ek Prem Katha. He stated he was pleased that Kumar decided to highlight this issue on such a big platform.
“It’s great to have stars like Akshay and films like Toilet: Ek Prem Katha spotlighting the open defecation crisis as it helps to drive more awareness of not only the issues but also what can be done to tackle this and create change. Our organisation, Water.org is dedicated to ending open defecation globally,” the star quipped.
“I have seen first-hand the devastating effects on health, the threat to women and children, and the contamination of safe drinking water from open defecation. It’s clear to me that a person cannot thrive and reach their full potential without first having access to safe water to drink, and the dignity of a sanitary toilet,” said Damon.
The actor last visited India in 2013 to observe the Water.org projects. During his trip and much to Damon’s fascination, the star witnessed the influence that the Indian film industry’s actors had on the general public.
He claims to have really enjoyed the traditional spicy Indian food but what he relished most was his time with the people of India. “While I do not have a date scheduled for my next trip, I am looking forward to visiting India again soon,” the Hollywood A-lister stated.
“The people I’ve met in the cities and villages of India were gracious and welcoming. Meeting with people from various communities in Chennai, Mumbai, and Bangalore, I listened to them tell me about their wish to have toilets,” he added.
Damon also spent quality time with the people that Water.org helped. “They were very proud to show the toilets they have built,” said the actor. “This is what sticks out for me… people want to have their own bathrooms; to feel safe, clean, and to have their privacy protected,” he expressed.
It’s no secret that this blockbuster film has spread great awareness, not only within India but worldwide. It is the highest grossing Hindi film of the year, and rightly so.
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