As the five-day The Hindu-Aviva Great Wall of Education comes to an end, we are flooded with books and overwhelmed by the response and support

It's over, and we are in the midst of countless books and thoughts. The Hindu-Aviva Great Wall of Education turned out be an opportunity for many to lend a helping hand, and for us, an opportunity to see the charitable side of Chennai.

Throw in some of the city's celebrities, and we have the perfect mix of books and stardust!

Here's what some of the who's-who of the city have to say about the initiative.

Aruna Sairam


There is so much value in these books, and I think it is a great initiative by Aviva and The Hindu.

Sudha Raghunathan

Carnatic vocalist

This project has touched an emotional chord in me because I have always considered books my best friends. I still cherish the three books including ‘Alice in Wonderland' I won as prizes in school. I hope this wall grows into a mountain…a mountain of information, knowledge and joy.

Srekala Bharath

Bharatanatyam dancer

I think this is a wonderful way to take education to underprivileged children, and I was spreading the word about this book donation drive amidst my students. I donated 100 books I put together with contributions from a couple of my students. I found the attitude of my students very reassuring — people want to help, and happily at that!

Tanvi Shah

Playback singer

You have to do something such as this to educate the future of our country, and I am happy to help. A couple of my friends and I donated around 30 books.


Film director

When I entered Express Avenue, I was happy to see the long line of books — it shows people want to help, but just don't know how. This kind of a drive is the right channel for people to reach out to the underprivileged. Only books can change the world. Books have done miracles to my life, and I hope these books create miracles in the lives of the children as well. I have donated 20 books in all — 10 in English, and 10 in Tamil.

R. Venkatesan

State Project Director

Sarva Siksha Abhiyan

I donated around 20 books from my personal collection, because I wanted to do my bit besides what Sarva Siksha Abhiyan will be doing.

The books received will be segregated according to age, and distributed to as many schools as possible in our network of 37,000 schools in the State. We hope to reach at least a few lakh children through this programme, and are confident that within a month the entire process will be complete. Books for the graduate and postgraduate level will be distributed to colleges in the State.



Once we have finished reading a book, it just sleeps in our book shelves or even gets lost at times. So, I'm happy I've donated a few of my books for this noble cause. Reading is a habit that turned out to be an eye-opener for me, and is an experience nobody should miss. (He donated five books.)

Madhuvanti Arun

Actor, dancer

and founder-trustee of Calibre Educational Foundation

Today, in the age of computers and e-books, it is important that we donate books to underprivileged children. We all have books that are simply ornaments — we hardly read them. Such books will be of better use for such initiatives. (She donated seven books, including one on the history of India, and guides.)

‘Crazy' Mohan

Playwright, scriptwriter and actor

While man is born with intelligence, knowledge is gained through books, an it's books that make great people out of men. While teaching every child individually is not possible, donating books is. This is something that we can and we must do.

Sonia Agarwal


It is all about sharing our education with the ones who need it the most. The cause is the most important, and everyone should support such initiatives.

S.Ve. Sekhar

Actor, politician

Giving books to somebody is charity, and here, it is like giving free education. Education can only be multiplied by passing on books to more people. The girl child's education is of huge importance because it is the woman who is the focal point of our families.

Mini Krishnan


Oxford University Press

Books outlast their owners, and are symbolic of the power of the word in the world. What greater gift can we give to our fellow citizens? I congratulate the people who thought of this plan. (She donated close to 520 books / notebooks from her side and on behalf of Trustees of Global Foundation (formerly known as GTL foundation), Mumbai.)