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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Rahul Mahajan - Swayamwar on NDTV Swayamvar

As if it was not enough to watch Rakhi Sawant, play the coy and blushing to-be-bride for Swayamvar Season 1, now audiences will have to put up with Rahul Mahajan as the dashing groom to 16 aspiring girls for the Second season of Swayamvar. Even though NDTV Imagine did manage to garner pretty decent TRPs for the first season, it remains to be seen whether the second season will offer the same kind of excitement. There are those within the television industry who believe that Rahul’s past shenanigans will help this bit of ‘reality’ programming strike gold. However the very fact that a person with a past as notorious as Rahul Mahajan is being elevated to the status of a celebrity raises certain question marks about our social norms.

Rahul Mahajan first burst into public view and public space as the grieving son of BJP politician, the late Pramod Mahajan. His father had been shot at by his own younger brother (Praveen Mahajan) and the whole sordidness of the event captured the imagination of India. At this father’s death, Rahul remained stoic, sombre and dignified, earning the respect of many. However this image suffered a fatal blow when on the 3rd of June, 2006, exactly a month after his father’s death, he had to be hospitalised after an alleged cocaine overdose. His father’s secretary, Bibek Mitra died on the same day due to this act. After being discharged from the hospital he had to live through many months of public speculation and trial. This was followed by a rushed marriage to Shweta Singh and an equally hurried divorce (one that cited domestic violence as reason).

His first appearance on television was for the controversial reality T.V. show Big Boss-2 where he came across as an incorrigible flirt, manipulative and extremely shrewd. He also served as the judge on Colors's Chhote Miyan, a children's stand-up comedy reality show. His third stint for television will be Swayamvar Season -2, Rahul Dulhaniya Le Jayega, which has received 16,755 entries via phone, email and SMS. He has gone on record to say that he is looking forward to finding his life partner, someone with whom he can begin a new journey, from this show. This show is being planned around him because he is purported to be a ‘celebrity’. Without that tag of celebrity hood, he is just another ordinary person with a famous surname.

But who is a celebrity? The etymology of the word ‘celebrity’ comes from the word celeber, to celebrate. In the past celebrities have been people of talent who would create something (written, painted, sculpted, acted out) that would be passed on to audiences. In today’s post modern society, celebrities are famous not for doing something extraordinary but for merely being. Rahul Mahajan is one such celebrity whose only claim to fame has been being in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. Whether he is able to find his ‘life partner’ a second time around and whether NDTV Imagine will be able to recreate the magic of Swayamvar Season 1 is for time and audiences to decide.

1 comment:

needseohelp said...

I just dont like dis man

Enjoy Nautanki TV