Sonu Sood’s humanitarian works for migrant workers and poor people across the country has been creating a lot of buzz on social media. It is understandable if someone wants to award him for his excellent work. The same happened yesterday when several news portals covered claimed that he has been awarded the SDG Special Humanitarian Action Award by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
There have been two recent incidents (West Bengal’s so-called UNWPA recognition for Mamata Banerjee and the case of ‘Drone Boy’) when awards that people claimed to have won were either proved to be fake, or the name of the organization was misleading. When OpIndia tried to find any announcement about the said award on the UNDP website or SDG Action Campaign Awards website, there was no info about it. The social media accounts did not have any information on the award presented to Sonu Sood, either. SDG Action Awards are still accepting applications, and the last date is 9th October 2020. The previous winners’ list has winners from 2019 and none from 2020.
The statement by UNDP India
After so much noise in the media, UNDP India had to step in. Late on Tuesday, they published a statement on Twitter clearing all doubts about the awards. In their statement, the Indian arm of UNDP wrote that the award was presented to Sonu Sood by the Department of Planning of the Government of Punjab, with Sustainable Development Goals Coordination Centre. An independent jury recommended his name, and UNDP was not involved in the selection or conferring process.
There is no doubt that Sonu Sood has helped many people during the time of need, and we congratulate him on the award he got for his philanthropic work during the coronavirus pandemic. However, the United Nations body did not confer the ‘Special Humanitarian Action Award’ on Sonu Sood.