My Values Are Built Around Humble Beginnings: Sonu Sood

The engineer-next-door from Moga ventures into acting and makes a mark as a Bollywood hunk. Now venturing into entrepreneurship, read along to find out what he recalls about his journey and shares about his vision

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Sonu Sood has arrived, and in more ways than one. The celebrated actor has truly made his mark. Having started his journey in Punjab, the engineer-turned-actor has also taken a plunge into entrepreneurship with his resources to trigger a positive cause. The boy from Moga talked to Entrepreneur India about his journey, vision and value system.

Sonu Sood

The transition
Sood recalls being the typical engineer who was all set to take over his father's shop in Moga. He cherishes valuable lessons from his time at the shop, but also recalls always having a larger calling to do something greater. Reminiscing on the old days, he emphasizes on the importance of education from this phase in his life.

"I'm from Moga, Punjab, and my father has a cloth showroom, which is still run by the same team in Moga. I had thought maybe after engineering, I'll go back to the showroom, and maybe try to expand. I learned those lessons from him (father), sitting at the shop, and dealing with customers one-on-one. When I finished my engineering I thought, this would be good to educate myself in, but I had to explore some different avenues also. That's how acting came into the picture; from South to different languages to Hindi," he says.

The ventures
Amid his several entrepreneurial plans, 'Ilaaj India' is a prominent name that involves getting different doctors on board to facilitate better healthcare. He has plans to bring in something big in education and other sectors as well.

"I knew that I had to do something which was still missing in my life. When the whole pandemic started, I started the food distribution drive, and slowly extended to the migrant's movement, getting them jobs and getting them medically treated. You realize how important it is to just keep everything aside, and go all out to help with what is needed. I'm trying to
explore more avenues where I can change the lives of people," he added.

Pravasi Rojgar and a wider impact on the startup world
He launched a premium initiative called 'Pravasi Rojgar' to help migrant workers reach home, and find jobs amid the difficulties of the pandemic. Sood also intends to spread his entrepreneurial work to all relevant sectors that would be beneficial to society.

"I feel it's a new beginning. We are doing something very big in education, technology, employment and medical fields too. Our work is almost in the final stages, some still in testing. I plan and wish to bring a kind of revolution in startups, which is not just about implementing a certain kind of idea but to also create new ideas that are needed by the society," he said.

Being a positive influencer during the pandemic
Sood talks about his value system from Punjab that still drives him to stand up for causes in the hour of need. He recalls how his father used to serve food and water to the needy on weekdays. He has kept up this tradition every year since then, which has had a cumulative impact on the positive influence that he emerged as in this pandemic.

"I started with the food drive, and slowly it multiplied. When I came across all these migrants walking I said I will find a way to send them back to their homes. After all the juggles and permissions from the government, I was able to send the first lot of 350 people to Karnataka. I extended this to all states even international evacuations. I was talking to embassies and ambassadors and it was finally happening. The kind of happiness you see on these individuals is phenomenal," he said.

Check out Entrepreneur India's 'Digital Cover - The Real Super Hero, Sonu Sood'. Listen to anecdotes from his native place, hints from his value system, time in the pandemic, and much more in our exclusive video.