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Manisha ‘excited’ to be part of campaign

  • Says committed to people’s efforts to clean the river
  • Bbagmati clean-up drive
- Anup Ojha, Kathmandu

Jun 18, 2017-The Bagmati Clean-up Mega Campaign entered its 214th week on Saturday, and as participants gathered this morning, the centre of attraction was actor Manisha Koirala, who was on Friday appointed the goodwill ambassador for the clean-up drive by the Ministry of Urban Development.

The campaign on Saturday near the Thapathali bridge saw huge participation of people—members of public, government officials, security personnel and 

students.

Manisha, well known for her roles for the 1990s Indian movies like “Bombay”, “Khamosi-The Musical” and “1942: A Love Story” to name a few, on Saturday plunged into the river as she joined hands to clean the holy river, helping the volunteers extract solid waste. 

“Excited and committed to be with all the genuine people’s efforts to clean Bagmati,” Manisha tweeted, posting a picture of her with a group of people cleaning the river.

“I am happy to be part of this campaign,” she told the Post. “As a goodwill ambassador for the Bagmati Clean-up Mega Campaign, I have added responsibility now. I wanted to do my bit to clean the river back in 2011-12, but then I was diagnosed with cancer,” added Manisha, who now is leading a healthy life after treatment has made her comeback to the silver screen while keeping herself busy as a motivational speaker. 

 

Manisha’s “Dear Maya” was recently released in India with some rave reviews. In the movie, she plays the title role of a middle-aged lonely woman living a life in recluse until she received a love letter. The 46-year-old is also set to be seen in a biopic of Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, playing the role of his mother Nargis Dutt. 

When asked how she will be able to contribute to the river clean-up campaign as she will busy doing films in Bollywood, Manisha said: “I have not signed many films. As an artiste, films are important to me. But since I am not doing many films, I will have ample time for social work like this river cleaning drive.”

“I will be honoured if I can make even a small difference,” said the humble actor, describing Bagmati as “part of our civilisation”. “It’s our responsibility to keep it clean.” This is, however, not the first time Manisha has been involved in social cause.

She was in Nepal after the Gorkha Earthquake in 2015 and worked for the rehabilitation of quake-effected people.

A month after the quake, Manisha, along with the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, and the UNFPA, launched “Dignity First”, a campaign that captures the essence of the life-saving work needed to support pregnant women, new mothers and their infants, and girls affected by the disaster.

In 2012, Manisha faced a setback when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. 

Later that year in December, she underwent a successful surgery in New York. She has been cancer free for the last four years.

As a motivational speaker, Manisha these days also participates in cancer-awareness programmes and speaks about her life-changing moments, inspires people to admire and appreciate life.

In 2015, she told the Indian Express newspaper that fighting cancer transformed her in many ways and that she had grown to appreciate life. 

Laying stress on the need to have strong willpower and commitment to win battles in several stages of life, Manisha says “this fight against the filth in Bagmati also can be won”.

“If we work sincerely and with commitment, it won’t take long to make clean water flowing in Bagmati,” she said. “I can see there is more awareness among people.

Earlier people would hesitate to touch the garbage here, but now they are gradually realising that they themselves have to get the filth out of the river. This is a positive change. Active participation of people here means the change indeed 

has started.” 

Published: 18-06-2017 08:46

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