The first one was something he was seriously working on for many years and has crossed over 33 lakh plantings so far, which is a humongous achievement for an individual. No one individual can claim to have planted so many plants in his lifetime, which Vivekh had achieved. Had he lived his full life, he would have certainly ensured the plantation of one crore plants, which unfortunately nature did not permit him to complete.
The second dream was something I was privy to as I used to be in touch with him regularly post the release of Vellai Pookkal (2019), in which he came out with a brilliant performance as an intelligent investigative officer. I was amazed by his versatility and called to appreciate him. Since then, we were in touch regularly and he was discussing doing a sequel to the film Vellai Pookkal and when that did not take off due to some reason, he discussed with me a project for which he has written the script and dialogue. He wanted to take up direction for the first time and also act in that film in the antagonist role. He was keen to pitch with either Madhavan or Arya as the hero of the film. We were planning to discuss the story which he was finalising and pitch with legend Shri Saravanan to take up the production. We met recently at legend Shri Saravanan’s office and had a brief chat too.
Vivekh’s achievements are far too many, not just as an actor but as an individual. While most comedy actors try only to entertain, Kalaivanar NS Krishnan in the 1930s to 1940s spread awareness on social issues and social reform through his dialogues in films. NSK was seen as a revolutionary in those times for bringing in an awakening among people through films. Vivekh followed in his footsteps and ensured that in each of his films. Along with entertaining the audience, he had ensured that his films communicate something meaningful to society and bring in awareness among the audience on social issues, that may lead to social reform. Hence, he was rightfully called ‘Chinna Kalaivanar’ by everyone.
Next came his mission to plant one crore trees in the country, a goal given by former President Shri Abdul Kalam. He religiously followed that goal and worked tirelessly to plant trees in various parts of the state. He was pursuing the mission to plant one crore trees so much that, he even left many films to focus on planting the trees. Such was his dedication and commitment to the upliftment of the society and safety of the environment.
Rarely do comedy actors get the highest civilian award in our country. Vivekh was that rare gem. His contribution to society through his plantation of trees and films has earned him the coveted Padma Shree in 2009, followed by an Honorary Doctorate in 2015.
Vivekh, who was very talented, knowledgeable and intelligent had contributed to society in many ways, be it through his awareness videos on many issues, which were released by the Government of Tamil Nadu often, or through his interesting speeches at various events. They were hilarious and at the same time, were laced with many meaningful thoughts on social reforms. Vivekh will live in the memory of everyone through his over 500 films, which contributed to the social reform in our society and the lakhs of trees he planted for the safety of our environment.
Lastly, how can an enthusiastic, energetic, and fitness-conscious person, who made everyone laugh through his films can leave us just like that, that too at a very young age? This is the question that lingers in everyone’s mind, who has come in contact with him.
Long live the glorious memories of Vivekh, who earned a great place in our life.
— The writer is a film producer