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Every One India launch — behind the scenes

It’s been a month of launches – in Bomaby and Delhi and Calcutta joined in last week. Action packed and thrill filled. From celeb soirees  to community voices, they made for the best launch experience.

Bombay here we come with EVERY ONE.

It was pouring with rain on 5th October in Bombay which seemed to dampen the spirits a bit – only a bit though. We were all ready – venue set, mothers from the communities arrived all we needed now was our celeb supporter to turn up now to complete the checklist.

The young and famous actress and former Miss World Priyanka Chopra had agreed to attend …ummm…but was stuck in Delhi. Those of us who have managed events know it’s all about risk management and last minute glitches. But not all was lost. She had sent a message of support.

We had to make this a success nontheless. So I zoomed off in the car to pick up Shabana Azmi, noted actress and social activist who is  supporting the EVERY ONE campaign.

Thank God for the new Mumbai sea link connecting two far ends. It was a real blessing in the daunting rain and worsening traffic. For a moment I distracted myself to grey sea view and regained my composure.

(About Mumbai sea link: Took 10 years to make instead of estimated 4 years and cost triple the estimated amount – few thousand crores- and you have pay 70 Rs to cross the sea link. It still is the pride of Mumbai.)

I arrived in time. Shabana had returned from Hyderabad just a while ago.
“Pragya, why don’t you join us for lunch? I will be just 10 minutes to change and ready to leave,” said Shabana.

We were escorted to the car with umbrella. It seemed like a cloud burst, the rain just wouldn’t stop
Back to business. I started briefing Shabana about the campaign and the issue. She seemed very well clued in to the issue so that did half the work. I recapped few pointers as our car drew close to the venue.

Mothers from the communities were eagerly waiting for interaction with a ‘film star’ after a session with Dr Manisha, Save the Children’s own health expert.

After leaving her with the group and staff, I rushed upstairs to check if our media friends had arrived. Very few by then.  Some called to check if we were still going ahead with our launch. Some were stuck in traffic and rain. As they say ‘The show must go on’.

So finally our media friends started trickling in to make a comfortable count.

We were ready to launch. Shabana came on stage and made quite an impact. EVERY ONE echoed along, “Enough is Enough.”

Indeed. It’s a shame for India to let its children die while boasting of 9% GDP growth. While 2 million children dying may be mere statistic for some, it is a personal tragedy for families who lose their child.

India!  It’s a wakeup call to save your children.


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