Stung by what they considered unfair and personal criticism of actor Kamal Haasan by state ministers, particularly Finance Minister D Jayakumar, the film star’s fans association on Wednesday (RPT) listed out welfare activities it had carried out in the last 38 years.
Jayakumar had been at the forefront of attacks on Haasan and had on July 30 questioned if the actor had done anything for the welfare of people during the tsunami in 2004 or the 2015 floods. “Have you (Haasan) done any welfare for people through your fan clubs during tsunami or the floods?” he had asked.
In response to the minister’s criticism, Akila Indiya Kamal Haasan Narpani Iyakkam (National forum of Kamal Hassan Fans Association) office-bearers, including its national organiser R Thangavel and Thanjavur district organiser Dharma Saravanan advised them (Ministers) to restrain themselves. “Kamal is not like the average politician who pretends before people, but has done a lot for society through the Iyyakkam,” they said in a statement.
Referring to Jayakumar’s question on what the actor had done when there were floods in Chennai and Cuddalore,they said he (Haasan) had contacted Iyyakkam office-bearers in north, south and central Chennai and made arrangements to provide food, drinking water and medicines. After the floods receded and even before the government health department swung into action,Iyyakkam members organised medical camps and rushed essential items and medicines to people, they pointed out. In Cuddalore, medical benefits worth Rs 15 lakh and services were organised by the Iyyakkam on instructions of the actor.
Haasan has been regularly contributing to the Chief Minister’s relief fund since the days of (late Chief Minister) M G Ramachandran, they said. The Iyyakkam office-bearers also recalled other measures taken by Haasan, including giving Rs 21 lakh to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi for the welfare of visually impaired. Financial assistance is also distributed to students from economically backward families, they said in the release.