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Ranveer Singh on helping the deaf community: Committed to carry through as their allies

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Ranveer Singh on helping the deaf community: Committed to carry through as their allies

Mohar Basu

The birth of the record label, IncInk was prompted by Ranveer Singh's desire to give a platform to independent musicians. As he dived deeper into the world of music, the actor soon found another urgent cause to champion mdash since 2019, he has been highlighting the issues faced by the Deaf community. As part of his ongoing commitment to the cause, the superstar will launch five music videos in Indian Sign Language (ISL), specially designed for them on International Day of Sign Languages today.
'If there is anything we have come to value in the past year-and-a-half, it is the power of being there for each other. My message to the youth would be to keep doing the work they are doing, while [trying to] create an inclusive space by working with the Deaf community,' says Singh. The videos include Mohabbat, Sangeet, Black, Aur karo and Vichaar, created by artistes Kaam Bhari, Spitfire and Kiss Nuka, among others. They have been interpreted and worked on by deaf signers at Hear A Million, a collective that works closely to empower them. In addition, the label's YouTube channel will run a 12-hour digital campaign to raise awareness about their needs and struggles.

Singh first put the spotlight on the community in 2019 when he roped in an ISL interpreter to perform with Spitfire on national television. Soon after, he began the campaign, urging the Indian government to declare ISL as the country's 23rd official language. His relentless efforts have led to a small but significant change. 'In May last year, we shared the petition. The first step to this milestone was taken by the government some weeks ago, when ISL was made optional for students to learn in schools from the ninth to 12th grade.'

However, it's a long journey to the finish line mdash one that will be fulfilled only by the support of the masses. Urging his fans to sign the petition, he says, 'We are committed to carry through as allies of the community, and get to the finish line with them. The day it will be the 23rd recognised language under the Constitution of India, the needle will shift [towards true inclusivity].'

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