Vidur’s Telly Tales – 7 : Bigg Boss Connection [ A ]

MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA             OCTOBER 04. 2011                     10.30 P.M.

On October 02 , 2011 , when I was watching the 5th season of  Bigg Boss ” , I realized that the show has become enormously big and has now totally metamorphosed into a very important show of Indian telivision.

When it started in November 03 , 2006 , it was not so big indeed. But slowly it grew and now it is one of the most eagerly awaited shows of Indian television.

This reality TV programme follows the ” Bigg Brother “ format of the Netherlands , developed by Endemol. It is a highly popular reality TV show in many countries of the world.

Locations of different versions of " Big Brother "
Locations of different versions of ” Big Brother “

In India it is known as ” Bigg Boss “ and as I have stated earlier , it was started in November 2006.

Bigg Boss [ Season - 1 ]
Bigg Boss Season – 1

Bigg Boss – Season – 1


The first season started on November 03 , 2006 and it ended on January 26 , 2007. Duration of the show was 86 days and Mr. Arshad Warsi was the host of the show and it was aired on Sony Entertainment Television. There were 15 participants and their names are : Rahul Roy , Carol Gracias , Ravi Kissen , Rakhi Sawant , Amit Sadh , Roopali Ganguli , Baba Sehgal , Ragini Shetty , Deepak Tijori , Anupama Verma , Aryan Vaid , Kashmira Shah , Deepak Parashar , Bobby Darling and Salil Ankola .

Rahul Roy was the winner and Carol Gracias was the runner – up .

In this season there were 2 participants , who are my students . They are ; Amit Sadh and Ragini Shetty.

Bigg Boss [Season -2]
Bigg Boss Season – 2

Bigg Boss – Season – 2


A much awaited Season  2 of ” Bigg Boss “ started on August 17 , 2008 and it ended on November 22 , 2008 . It lasted for 98 days and it’s host was Ms. Shilpa Shetty. There was one difference ; in stead of Sony Entertainment Television , this time it came on Colors TV . This season , like the first one , also had 15 participants and their names are : Ahsaan Qureshi , Alina Wadiwala , Ashutosh Kaushik , Debojit Saha , Diana Hayden , Jade Goody , Ketki Dave , Monica Bedi , Payal Rohatgi , Rahul Mahajan , Raja Choudhary , Rakhi Vijan , Sambhavana Seth , Sanjay Nirupam and Zulfi Syed .

Ashutosh Kaushik was the winner and Raja Choudhary was the runner – up .

In this season there were 2 participants , who are my students . They are ; Monica Bedi and Zulfi Syed .

Bigg Boss [ Season - 3 ]
Bigg Boss Season – 3
Bigg Boss – Season – 3 
Bigg Boss Season 3 became really big. Some well known personalities as participants and Mr. Amitabh Bachchan as host made it a one of the biggest reality game show in the television history of  India. It started on October 04 , 2009 and ended on December 26 , 2009. Like it’s 1st season , it lasted for 84 days and like the second season it came on Colors TV. The well – known celebrities , who participated in this season , were :  Vindu Dara Singh , Poonam Dhillon , Ismail Darbar , Sherlyn Chopra , Kamal Rashid Khan , Bakhtiyaar M. Irani , Tanaaz B. Irani , Aditi Govitrikar , Jaya Sawant , Shamita Shetty , Claudia Ciesla , Rohit Verma , Raju Shrivastav , Vinod Kambli and Pravesh Rana .
Vindu Dara Singh was the winner and Pravesh Rana was the runner – up .
In this season too there were 2 participants , who are my students ; Aditi Govitrikar and Shamita Shetty .
Bigg Boss Season - 4
Bigg Boss Season – 4

Bigg Boss – Season 4 


This eagerly awaited season of ” Bigg Boss “ came in 2010. It started on October 03 , 2010 and it ended on January 08 , 2011 . It lasted for 96 days . It came on Colors like season 2 and 3 and Mr. Salman Khan was the host. Unlike other 3 seasons , this season had 16 participants .

Names of the participants were ; Aanchal Kumar , Abbas Kazmi , Ashmit Patel , Begum ( Ali Saleem ) , Devender ( Bunty ) , Dolly Bindra , Hrishant Goswami , Khali , Manoj Tiwari , Rahul Bhatt , Sakshi Pradhan , Sameer Soni , Sara Khan , Seema Parihar, Shweta Tiwari and Veen Malik .

Shweta Tiwari was the winner and Khali was the runner – up .

Like earlier season , in this season too , there were 2 participants , who are my students . They are ; Ashmit Patel and Sameer Soni .

Bigg Boss Season - 5
Bigg Boss Season – 5

Bigg Boss – Season – 5 


This 5th season started on Colors on October 02 , 2011 and it will end on January 07 , 2012 . This time there are two hosts ; Mr. Salman Khan and Mr. Sanjay Dutt . Contrary to earlier seasons , this season will have 12 ladies , 1 transgender and only 1 man , Shakti Kapoor.

The names of the 14 participants are ; Shakti Kapoor , Pooja Bedi , Shonali Nagrani , Nihita Biswas , Shraddha Sharma , Mandeep Bevli , Raageshwari , Vida Samadzai , Mahek Chahal , Sonika Kaliraman , Pooja Misrra , Gulabo Sapera , Laxmi Narayan Tripathi and Juhi Parmar .

Names of the winner and runner – up will be known in January .

Unlike earlier seasons , this season has only one student of mine and the name is ; Mahak Chahal .

When I was watching Season 5 , I realized that every season of ” Bigg Boss ” till the 4th season had 2 students per season . Total number of my students in ” Bigg Boss ” comes to 9 .

Bigg Boss – Season – 1 : Amit Sadh / Ragini Shetty

Bigg Boss – Season – 2 : Monica Bedi / Zulfi Syed

Bigg Boss – Season – 3 : Aditi Govitrikar / Shamita Shetty

Bigg Boss – Season – 4 : Ashmit Patel / Samir Soni

Bigg Boss – Season – 5 : Mahek Chahal

I dont have photos with other students. I have just one with Ragini Shetty and I am posting it here.

With Ragini Shetty
With Ragini Shetty



Related articles

Golden Jubilee of Bhojpuri Film Industry

It was a cold day of North Indian winter in Patna, capital of Bihar . The day was February 16, 1961. There were flurry of activities near Shaheed Smarak , Patna. On 16 February 1961 , muhurat of first Bhojpuri filmGanga Maiya Tohe Piyari Chadhaibon ” was performed . Thus a tentative step was taken and a nascent film industry slowly started coming to life. ” Ganga Maiya Tohe Piyari Chadhaibon ” was duly completed and was released to fabulous response of Bhojpuri speaking masses. It was huge hit of its time and is now considered a classic. Lata Mangeshkar and Mohammad Rafi sang all the songs. Shailendra wrote the lyrics and all the stars were taken from the Hindi Film Industry.

Shaheed Smarak or Martyr's Memorial Patna

Image via Wikipedia - Shaheed Smarak , Patna

Today Bhojpuri Film Industry completes 50 years. Much water has been flown down the Ganga in all these 50 years . The nascent industry now boasts of almost 50 releases a year. This industry is now supported by 8  TV channels and many more channels are coming. It has its own trade magazine , BHOJPURI CITY , published from Mumbai . Star prices are sky-rocketing and so are the tantrums and paraphernalia. But still this industry is not seen in good light by Hindi film industry people and also by general Bhojpuri speaking populace. It is derided, ridiculed and is considered down-market. Hindi film stars refuse to work in Bhojpuri films. Music Directors and renowned play back singers shun it like plague and family audience , specially ladies , avoid going to cinema halls , where Bhojpuri films are screened. Gone are the days of  classics like ” Ganga Maiya Tohe Piyari Chadhaibon ”  , ” Lagi Nahi Chhute Rama “ and ” Bidesia “. Even films like ” Hamar Sansar ” , ” Sita Maiya ” , ” Balam Pardesiya “ and ” Dangal ” are long forgotten. ” Dharti Maiya “ ,  the last of the  Mohicans , is also a distant history. Days of stars like ;  Aseem Kumar, Kumkum, Naaz , Sujit Kumar , Padma Khanna , Rakesh Pandey and Kunal Singh are over . Bhojpuri film industry went into silent and sleepy mode after hugely successful ” Dharti Maiya ” and remained dormant for almost a decade.

In 2001 it got a new lease of life after ” Saiyan Hamar ” , ” Padit Ji Batayin Na Biyah Kab Hoyi ” and ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala “. There were new stars on the firmament  and industry started looking vibrant and robust. It was the decade of Ravi Kissen, Manoj Tiwari, Dinesh Lal Yadav [ Nirahua ], Pawan Singh, Rani Chatterji, Pakhi Hegde and Rinku Ghosh. Even a Nepali star Biraj Bhatt is ruling the rust. According to the grapevine Dinesh Lal Yadav [ Nirahua ] charges 75 lakhs. Average budge of a Bhojpuri film is now almost 1 crore. Apparently picture looks rosy and healthy. But frankly speaking its an ailing and decaying industry.

There are 24 crore Bhojpuri speaking people in this world. Apart from India, there are several Bhojpuri speaking nations in this hemisphere. Notable among them are : Mauritius, Fiji, Surinam, Trinidad and Guyana. European nations like Holland also has a sizable population of Bhojpuri speaking people. Definitely the market is huge and lucrative. So no doubt huge money is at stake . Therefore many unscrupulous people have sneaked in the industry feigning as a film maker, though the fact of the matter is , they are not genuine film makers.

There are people who don’t know the language or culture or the background of the people living in the hinterlands of Eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. They are like migratory birds, who come for the quick buck. They make their temporary nest , collect their eggs and then leave for greener pastures and more lucrative fields. And because of them , Bhojpuri industry suffers.

Today as it completes 50 years of its existence, it is time to ponder. Why there is no representation of Bhojpuri films in National and International Film Festivals ? Why no Bhojpuri film was ever selected for the Oscars ? Why National Awards still elude us ? Why no one from the industry has been thought worthy of Padma Awards ? An industry of 50 years of standing is considered unworthy of the Oscars and we the film makers are not perturbed. An industry of 24 crore Bhojpuri speaking people is considered down market and we the film makers are not ashamed. An industry churning 50 films per year is not worthy of National or International Awards and we are not bothered. We, like a megalomaniac, think that everything is fine and that we are making great films.

A small Marathi film ” Shwas ” goes to Oscars. A new film maker makes an experimental Marathi  film ” Harishchandrachi Factory “ and it also goes to Oscars. Bengali film industry , though smaller than Bhojpuri film industry , boasts of gigantic figures like Satyajit Ray, Mrinal Sen, Ritwik Ghatak and Tapan Sinha. Ray got Oscar [ Life Time Achievement ] and others have been awarded Dada Sahab Phalke Award and Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan Awards . A tiny state of Kerala boasts of internationally acclaimed film maker Adoor Gopalakrishnan. Even Assam boasts of Jahnu Barua and Bhupen Hazarika. Do we have any Bhojpuri film maker who can claim to have international standing ? I have nothing against these giants. I am only lamenting and hanging my head in shame at the unfortunate state of the pitiable and deplorable condition of Bhojpuri Film Industry.

Now the question arises, who is to be blamed for this state of affaires ? My answer is simple . And the answer is : WE. We the people of Bhojpuri speaking provinces hereby should solemnly affirm and accept that we have given our industry a bad name, a bad shape and a bad reputation . We make bad and unwatchable films. We insist that vulgarity should be the norm of the day. We proudly proclaim that Item songs should be and must be an integral part of our films. Marathi and Bengali films are recognized worldwide and we pat our back that we have a titillating item number in our film.

Today on the golden jubilee day of Bhojpuri Film Industry , central or provincial governments have no programmes to commemorate the occasion .  TV  channels also don’t have anything  for the day. There is no buzz in the print media either. Can you imagine this kind of silence for Tamil , Telugu , Kannada , Malayalam or Bengali film industry’s golden jubilee day ? You know the answer and the answer is a firm no.

On this occasion we should take a pledge to retrieve the situation. Let us give our industry a good name, a decent reputation and an international recognition.



Bhojpuri Cinema Down the Years

Ashok Kumar & Devika Rani : Achhut Kanya

As is known, ” Raja Harishchandra ” , the first Indian film was made in 1913. ” Alam Ara ” , the first Indian talkie was made in 1931. Films in other major Indian languages followed soon. But Bhojpuri, though a major dialect of Hindi belt of India , waited till 1961, almost 48 long years after the first Indian film. This in spite of the fact that almost all the major hits of early Indian Cinema had rural north Indian theme . Ashok Kumar and Devika Rani’s ” Achhut Kanya” is the most glaring example of this fact. It was released in 1936. Dilip Kumar‘s ” Ganga Jumna ” was made in Awadhi , a major dialect of Uttar Pradesh . It was released in 1960. Bhojpuri  Cinema had to wait for one more year, in spite of the fact that ” Ganga Jumna ” was a golden jubilee hit of its time. In the above mentioned films Ashok Kumar and Dilip Kumar played rural , rustic characters of Uttar Pradesh. Both the films were major hits. Ashok Kumar and Dilip Kumar were gigantic stars of their times , but in spite of this fact, there were no breakthrough in Bhojpuri films.

Dilip Kumar & Vyjayanti Mala :in First Awadhi Film - Ganga Jumna

Screen image from Alam Ara 1931, the first Ind...

Image via Wikipedia - First Indian Talkie _ Alam Ara - 1931

”] ”]

First Assamiya Talkie - Joymati - 1935

Bhojpuri cinema history begins in 1961 with the well-received film ” Ganga Maiyya Tohe Piyari Chadhaibo ” , which was directed by Kundan Kumar.Asim Kumar and Kumkum were the stars of this super hit film. Its music was  provided by Chitragupt, was extremely popular. Lyrics were written by Shailendra and songs were sung by Lata Mangeshkar, Mohammad Rafi and Asha Bhonsale. Its hit music is remembered even today. Throughout the following decades, films were produced only in fits and starts. Films such as  ” Laagi Nahi Chhute Ram “, ” Bidesiya ” (1963, directed by S. N. Tripathi) , ” Loha Singh ” and ” Ganga  ” (1965, directed by Kundan Kumar) were profitable and popular, but in general Bhojpuri films were not commonly produced in the 1960s and 1970s. 

In the 1980s, enough Bhojpuri films were produced to tentatively make up an industry. Films such as ” Mai ” (1989, directed by Rajkumar Sharma) and ” Hamar Bhauji ” (1983, directed by Kalpataru) continued to have at least sporadic success at the box office. ” Nadiya Ke Paar ” is a 1982 Hindi-Bhojpuri blockbuster directed by Govind Moonis and starring Sachin, Sadhana Singh, Inder Thakur, Leela Mishra and Soni Rathod.The film ran houseful for years in a movie theatre in Allahabad. However, this trend faded out by the end of the decade, and by 1990, the nascent industry seemed to be completely finished 

Ravi Kissan

The industry took off again in 2001 with the “Silver Jubilee” hit ” Saiyyan Hamar ” ( directed by Mohan Prasad), which shot the hero of that film, Ravi Kissan, to superstardom.This success was quickly followed by several other remarkably successful films, including ” Panditji Batai Na Biyah Kab Hoi ” (2005, directed by Mohan Prasad) and ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala ” (2005). In a measure of the Bhojpuri film industry‘s rise, both of these did much better business in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar than mainstream Bollywood hits at the time, and both films, made on extremely tight budgets, earned back more than ten times their production costs. ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala ” also introduced Manoj Tiwari, formerly a well-loved folk singer, to the wider audiences of Bhojpuri cinema. In 2010, he and Ravi Kissan are still the leading actors of Bhojpuri films, along with Nirahua and Pawan Singh.  The extremely rapid success of their films has led to dramatic increases in Bhojpuri cinema’s visibility, and the industry now supports an awards show and a trade magazine,  ” Bhojpuri City ” ,which chronicles the production and release of what are now over one hundred films per year. Many of the major stars of mainstream Bollywood cinema, including Amitabh Bachchan, have also recently worked in Bhojpuri films. Mithun Chakraborty’s Bhojpuri debut ” Bhole Shankar ” , released in 2008, is considered as the biggest Bhojpuri hit of all time.Also in 2008, a 21-minute diploma film Bhojpuri film by Siddharth Sinha, ” Udedh Bun ” was selected for world premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival,later it won the National Film Award for Best Short fiction Film.

Once upon a time writer-filmmaker Kamal Anand dubbed Namak Halal into Bhojpuri , after sitting on its copyright for eight years, as there was no market for films in that dialect. “But today the situation has changed.The new version is called ” Babua Khiladi Dadua Anadi ” with Amitabh as ‘Babua’. The film’s memorable songs such as Jawani Jaaneman, Raat Baki Baat Baki and Pag Ghungaroo Baandh Meera Nachi Thi have been peppered in Bhojpuri.The new cinema has attracted producers like Subhash Ghai, Rajshri, Nitin Manmohan and Tinu Verma. Actors Govinda, Juhi Chawla and Nagma are already taking lessons in the language. Even Columbia Tristar briefly toyed with the idea of getting one of its films dubbed.

Indian state of Uttar Pradesh

Image via Wikipedia

“It makes good business sense as these films sell in Bihar, UP, and parts of Punjab and Maharashtra,”says producer-director Ranjan Kumar Singh. Trade analyst Taran Adarsh agrees. “Most Bhojpuri films are made in small budgets, usually Rs 20-30 lakh, and they fetch Rs 1-2 crore.”Several of these films are grossing 10 times their production costs. A good film can even make a profit of Rs 10-12 crore.

Regions of Uttar Pradesh

Image via Wikipedia

A few years ago, this wasn’t the case. While Gujarati, Marathi and Punjabi films got their due at the box office, Bhojpuri films didn’t really recapture the supersuccess of the 1982 blockbuster ” Nadiya Ke Paar” , which starred Sachin and Sadhna Singh, and was made under the respectable banner of Rajshri Productions.

Twenty two years hence, the tide finally turned. In 2005, Manoj, a struggling singer, debuted in sex comedy ” Sasura Bada Paisewala.”  The film ran for more than 50 weeks in Varanasi and Kanpur in UP and for 25 weeks elsewhere. ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala ” made with a modest budget of Rs 30 lakh, grossed a stupendous Rs 15 crore. Manoj’s other films such as ” Daroga Babu I Love You ” then went on to do a business of Rs 4 crore and ” Bandhan Tutey Na ” has already made Rs 3 crore..

The Bhojpuri Industry has learned to talk in crores and has budgeted Rs 1-1.25 crore for an action film ” Dharti Putra ” , also starring who else but Manoj. Industry sources say that Manoj has made the most of the prosperity. He was paid Rs 2 lakh earlier. Now he charges Rs 50 lakh a film. He admits that his films are raking in big money in UP and Bihar. ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala ”   played to full houses in Bihar and had surpassed Hindi films in the region, except for Gadar, for now. Even Hindi heavyweights like ” Mangal Pandey, The Rising “, are said to have fallen behind ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala ”  in Bihar and MP . Manoj is very busy these days.  ” Pyar Ke Bandhan ” , ” Dharti Kahey Pukar Ke ” with Ajay Devgan followed by a film with Jackie Shroff. ” Damadji ” ,  followed by Tinu Varma’s Dharti Putra.”Meanwhile Hindi filmsinger Udit Narayan, a Bihari, has debuted as a producer with ” Kab Hui Gauna Hamar.”  The film ran to packed theatres for two months in Punjab and Delhi and its success had encouraged Narayan to produce another film, to be shot in London. The film goes back 150 years and depicts the plight of Biharis in Mauritius..  

Distributors attribute the success to cleaner content. “Gone are double-meaning dialogues, lack of a coherent storyline and poor technical quality. The films are slicker, “says Manoj. Bhojpuri films are also heading to countries which have a Bhojpuri-speaking population such as Mauritius, Fiji, Surinam and Nepal.  We started selling ” Daroga Babu I Love You ” overseas and then  looked at possibilities for ” Sasura Bada Paisa Wala. The returns have taken film shootings out of grimy studios to exotic locations. ” Babul Pyare ” with Raj Babbar, Arun Govil, Ravi Kishan and Hrishita Bhatt completed a shooting spell in London . Kishan, who also starred in ” Saiyan Hamar” , says that Bhojpuri films have saved single-screen cinema halls in Bihar and UP, which would have otherwise been converted into malls.

New moral standards are guarding Bhojpuri films. In ” Firangi Dulhania ” , a story about a village boy from Bihar who goes to study in London and returns with a foreign bride, director Ranjan Kumar Singh, has got the exciting services of an Ukrainian actress, Tanya (what else..)


Diwakar PandeySujeet KumarManoj TiwariRavi KishanNazir HussainRakesh PandeyJai TilakDinesh Lal YadavBhushan Tiwari, Kunal, Ram Singh, Anand RaiJ.MohanVinod TiwariAsim KumarHari shuklaBrij KishoreVijai KhareKewal KrishnaLaliteshDinesh KaushikManoj VermaDevendra PodwalKiran Kumar, and JeevanSushil Singh,Vinod,Vinay, Brijesh Tripathi Laxman ChaturvediRajendra Karn, Mukesh Kumar Barnwal, Mrityunjay Sharma, Pawan singh, parbesh lal yadav, amit kumar yadav, Saagara Nageena Tripathy, Trinath


NaazShweta Tiwari parul yadav


Bihar Films and Devi Padmavati FilmsKamasar Films


Nazir Hussain, Ranjeet singh , Kundan KumarRajkumar SharmaPrakash JhaSiddharth SinhaAbhishek ChhadhaAshok JainLalji Gupta, and Kalpataru.Ram Nath Rai,[Udaisenapati][Aslam Sheque][Raj Kumar]

Music directors

Vinay Bihari, Rajesh Rajneesh [Madhuker Anand]

Famous films

Main article: List of Bhojpuri Film

Ganga Maiyya Tohe Piyari Chadhaibo (1962)  • Laagi Nahi Chhute Ram (1963)  • Ganga (1965)  • Bidesiya (1963)  • Bhouji (1965)  • Loha Singh (1966)  • Dher Chalaki Jinkara (1971)  • Daku Rani Ganga (1976/II)  • Amar Suhagin (1978)  • Balam Pardesia(1979)  • Chanwa Ke Take Chakor (1981)  • Saiyan Magan Pahelwani Mein (1981)  • Saiyan Tore Karan (1981)  • Hamar Bhauji (1983)  • Chukti Bhar Senur (1983)  • Dulha Ganga Paar Ke (1986)  •  ;’Jug Jug Jiya More LalRoos Gailen Saiyen Hamaar(1988)  • • Ganga (2006)

Ganges River, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Image via Wikipedia

Bhojpuri cinema is also watched in many parts of the world, where Indian diasporahas settled, including BrazilFijiGuyanaMauritiusSouth AfricaSuriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, many colonizers faced labor shortages due to the abolition of slavery; thus, they imported many Indians, many from Bhojpuri-speaking regions. Today, some 200 million people in the West IndiesOceania, and South America speak Bhojpuri as a native or second language[1] and they also watch Bhojpuri films.




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