New Delhi: Bollywood actor Alia Bhatt has taken to Instagram to tell her fans how she is spending her time during the national lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus — by learning “something new”.
The Raazi star, who is one of the latest celebrities to pledge support and contribute to the PM-CARES fund and the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund (Maharashtra) in the fight against coronavirus, is taking an online creative writing course and shared a picture on Instagram of her notes along with the caption, “Stay home & .. learn something new”.
The post has received almost 800,000 likes.
About a fortnight ago, when there wasn’t a lockdown in place but people were self-isolating, she posted a photograph in which she can be seen reading Richard Reed’s If I Could Tell You Just One Thing, which has a chapter on Nitin Sawhney, the famous British-Indian musician. The post has received about 663,090 likes.
Prior to that, she had shared a post highlighting that while it is necessary to wash hands frequently and for 20 seconds each time, one must be mindful of not wasting water and adding to another crisis. The star has also been making proactive efforts to inform her fans and followers about fake news and misinformation amid the coronavirus panic.
Last week, she shared a post debunking the myth that pets can be a source of Covid-19. “There is currently NO EVIDENCE to suggest that pet animals can be a source of infection to humans. Maharashtra’s Health Minister Rajesh Tope has said that there is no case in the world of domesticated animals spreading Coronavirus and people SHOULD NOT ABANDON THEIR PETS for fear of infection,” read the post.
In a recent video chat with film critic Rajeev Masand and Johar, Bhatt also spoke about how the lockdown has brought to light just how privileged she is and how grateful she is for that, when there are many others who are struggling for basics like food and shelter. She added that this pandemic is bigger than her desire to go out and meet friends.
This is miles ahead of initial public perceptions of the actor, who received flak for her alleged lack of general knowledge. In 2014, Bhatt made her debut on filmmaker Karan Johar’s talk show Koffee With Karan, along with her Student Of The Year co-stars Siddharth Malhotra and Varun Dhawan. On the show, when asked who the president of India was, she replied with “Prithviraj Chauhan”. Viewers were not sure if she meant Prithviraj Chauhan, the Rajput warrior, or Prithviraj Chavan, chief minister of Maharashtra at the time, but she took the criticism in her stride and even starred in an All India Bakchod video spoofing her lack of awareness.