Sunday, July 24, 2011

BIHAR POST FEATURE - Bhojpuri gets a new champ in Shotgun

BHOJPURI language has a new champion — Bollywood veteran and BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha.

Sinha is pitching for the inclusion of Bhojpuri in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution after the success of his television game show, Ke Bani Crorepati, which is the cow belt version of the hit Hindi quiz show Kaun Banega Crorepati.

“ I was initially reluctant to accept the offer to become a host of the Bhojpuri KBC ,” he said. “ But I accepted it after I was told that the popularity of the game show might help the language to make it to the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution.” Shotgun, as Sinha is popularly known as, said Bhojpuri had not been included in the Eighth Schedule despite being the language spoken by millions of people in India and abroad.

“ It is the language of the first President of the country Dr Rajendra Prasad and that of Lok Nayak Jayaprakash Narayan. I have nothing against other languages included in the Eighth Schedule, but many of them are spoken by far less people,” he said. “ In contrast, the number of Bhojpuri speakers in India is next only to that of Hindi. It must, therefore, be made part of the schedule as soon as possible.” The Lok Sabha MP from Patna Sahib said the game show, being aired on the Bhojpuri television channel Mahuaa , had elicited tremendous response from the Bhojpuri- speaking audience.

“ It has truly become a common man’s show,” he said. “ I hope its popularity will hasten the process of Bhojpuri getting its constitutional due.” To further champion the cause through his game show, Sinha is making all- out efforts to bring in his friends and colleagues from the world of films and politics.

He invited former Union finance minister Yashwant Sinha along with his wife and even made them sing Bhojpuri folk songs on Bhojpuri gets a new champ in Shotgun the show in an episode that was telecast on Friday.

In chaste Bhojpuri, Yashwant shared his experience as an IAS officer and revealed the reasons for quitting the coveted administrative service 12 years before his retirement. “ I wanted to serve society at a bigger level,” he said.

Sinha also invited another family friend and party colleague Hema Malini even though she was not familiar with the Bhojpuri language. “ Shatru ji is a family friend and he is hosting the show,” Hema said. “ I will come wherever he calls me.” A channel insider said Hema’s episode, which will be telecast next Friday, would be the best so far. “ The two stars share a great chemistry and are family friends,” he said.

“ Hema ji has revealed many things about her career in this episode which were not known earlier. This will be a viewers’ delight.” But the USP of this episode will be the bits of Bhojpuri Sinha made Hema speak.

“ Hema ji has said maari muhar lagaai thappa a number of times which is the Bhojpuri equivalent of Amitabh Bachchan’s famous lock kiya jaaye in the Hindi KBC ,” Shotgun added.

Interestingly, Hema’s husband veteran actor Dharmendra was also supposed to appear on the show along with Hema, but he could not make it to the shoot in Kolkata on Friday because of an indisposition. He will now appear on a separate episode which will be telecast a week after Hema’s episode.

The first season of the Bhojpuri KBC will conclude with Sinha hosting filmstar Aamir Khan on the show early next month.

Mahuaaa channel spokesperson Nishant Prashant said the celebrity episodes of the Bhojpuri KBC have become extremely popular among the viewers.

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