Neo unites India against terror with cricket

By Sangeeta Tanwar , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | December 16, 2008
Neo Cricket's SMS campaign, Cricket Unites, is a tribute to the brave hearts of the Mumbai terror attacks. The revenue generated will go towards the welfare of the Maharashtra state police

Neo & #BANNER1 & # Cricket, the 24x7 cricket channel, has initiated an SMS campaign called Cricket Unites to pay tribute to the brave police officers who sacrificed their lives fighting for the safety and security of citizens. The revenue generated from the campaign will go towards the welfare of the Maharashtra state police.

Speaking to afaqs!, Abhishek Verma, head, marketing and communications, Neo Sports Broadcast, says, "To be a part of the initiative, all people have to do is SMS the key words, Cricket Unites, along with a message saying how cricket unites the country, to 58990."

Why a campaign around cricket? Verma says, "Without doubt, cricket is the biggest unifying factor for all Indians, cutting across caste and creed. The English cricket team came back to play the Test series, proving that the spirit of the game is supreme. So, we thought that the game would provide us with a good opportunity to rally people to express their solidarity in support of the victims of the terror attacks."

The campaign was kick-started on December 11. The messages received are being run on Neo Sports. At the end of the activity, the best message will be selected and the winner will be invited to express his concerns about terrorist attacks on the show, Dial C for Cricket, hosted by former cricketer Mohinder Amarnath.

Verma adds that Neo Cricket has been airing promos on all the network channels to encourage people to come forward and be a part of the initiative. Neo is also sending alerts to its database of 80,000 people to inform them about the campaign and get them to participate in the fight against terrorism.

On an average, Neo Sports is getting 30,000-35,000 SMSes daily. Verma says that the revenue generated from the initiative will be given to the police as a mark of tribute to all the brave men in uniform.

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