Amitabh Bachchan, one of the most prominent figures in the history of Indian cinema and a powerful advocate for children, was appointed a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in April 2005.
Mr. Bachchan has made the eradication of polio a particular focus of his work with UNICEF. In his personal blog, he seeks to raise awareness about the importance of polio immunization to protect children against this debilitating disease and ensure that their rights to education, health care and protection are respected.
Since 2002, prior to his official appointment, Mr. Bachchan has supported UNICEF’s efforts in collaboration with partners to boost immunizations against polio especially in India. He appeared in a series of award-winning television and radio commercials, which the Government of India and UNICEF telecast on all national channels. Due to his enormous popularity, credibility and appeal as a humanitarian, he contributed significantly to generating awareness around the issue and encouraged parents from diverse parts of the country to get their children immunized.
In support of the 20th anniversary on the Convention on the Rights of the Child in November 2009, Mr. Bachchan recorded a public service announcement on the urgent need for polio eradication. In 2010, he wrote an editorial for World Polio Day, which appeared in the leading daily newspaper, Times of India. For 2011, six PSAs on polio eradication will be launched.
A prolific actor, Mr. Bachchan, who has a wide public following, has starred in more than 150 films. He has won numerous major awards in his career, including four National Film Awards. In addition to acting, Mr. Bachchan is known for his work as a singer, film producer and television presenter, and was an elected member of the Indian Parliament from 1984 to 1987.
In the year 2000, Amitabh Bachchan stepped up to host India's adaptation of the British television game show, Who Wants to Be a Mllionaire? entitled, Kaun Banega Crorepati. As it did in most other countries where it was adopted, the programme found immediate success.
Amitabh Bachchan lives in Mumbai, India.