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Entertainment industry opens wallet for daily wage earners


MUMBAI: Top players of the media and entertainment industry have come forward to support the daily wage earners who have lost their livelihood due to suspension of production activities after the Covid-19 crisis escalated in March.

The sudden halt impacted the sustenance of the daily wage earners involved in the activities across the production chain— artists, camera men, spot boys, light boys and their dependent families.

Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) has earmarked Rs 10 crore to provide a month’s salary to each of the daily wage earners working on network’s shows and also supply groceries for 50,000 daily wage earners of the M&E industry for a month.

“As a conscientious conglomerate, it is our responsibility to direct efforts towards ensuring aid reaches our primary beneficiaries who have contributed to the success of the network,” said NP Singh, MD & CEO, SPN.

Zee Entertainment Enterprises (ZEE) has offered financial help to over 5,000 daily wage earners, working directly or indirectly in company’s various productions. The company will also match the voluntary contributions made by the employees to the PM Cares fund through an internal portal.

“We stand committed to financially support all the daily wage earners working in our production ecosystem. In these challenging times, it is extremely critical for India Inc to come together and support the national level initiative undertaken by our Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” said Punit Goenka, MD & CEO, ZEE.

Apart from financially helping its workers, Viacom18 has partnered with GiveIndia to roll out a nationwide fundraising campaign to support daily wage earners across industries. Frontlined by contribution from its own employees, the company will be launching a social media campaign to encourage Indians to contribute and will match the corpus collected.

Video streaming major, Netflix, which has announced a $100 million global package, and in the release said that it will contribute $1 million (Rs 7.5 crore) to Producers Guild of India (PGI) Relief Fund to help daily wage earners in the entertainment industry in the country.

Additionally, Netflix has also committed up to four weeks of pay to help all below-the-line crew and cast who were scheduled to work on its productions in India.

Indian top production house, Yash Raj Films, has also pledged its support to protect the workers via the Yash Chopra Foundation, which will be crediting the donation directly into the banks of the daily wage earners. In Phase 1 of the support, YRF will be paying Rs 1.5 crore to these workers and their families.

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