And so it has begun, the kalyug, declared my grandmother. Men will now romance men and women, other women. However, even the High Court order making gay sex legal had not scandalized the 75+ lady as much as the news that 10 men had decided to prove their love for the item bombshell in the show Rakhi ka swayamwar. With a sigh she declared, while Rakhi has found 10 suitors, my granddaughter doesn’t even have a boyfriend. Not one to be bogged down by such comments, I was quick to divert the topic and said, it is a progressive show. Look, finally the goal of women emancipation is turning into a reality. She is calling the shots and men, who in another world, in a different time zone would have easily been suspected of committing heinous crimes, are today dancing, walking on coals and making complete fools out of themselves for the chance to marry Rakhi.
Is the show authentic? Well, I am no gaon ki gauri to believe that for a moment. But accept it or not, it is catching eyeballs and how. The show scaled to the TRP rating of 3.5% in cable and satellite homes of the Hindi speaking market in the first week itself. The sensible person, living in some dark corner within me nauseates at the idea of majority of the Indian viewers watching the so called dramatized swayamwar. But lets face it, the girl who, after making 4 pages and reading 5 pages, driving through the manic traffic of Delhi, arguing about innumerable things with acquaintances and strangers, would not like anything better but to see 10 men making complete fools of themselves for Rakhi Sawant. This makes me wonder, are we as a society becoming voyeuristic in our tendencies. We love watching Bigg Boss, Sarkar Ki duniya and Roadies. We claim it is for the tasks… but lets admit it it is as much for Palak’s abuses and Ali’s attempts to woo women, who were his fellow contestants.
I know this issue is not as serious as the unrest in Iran and China, the soaring prices of veggies, pulses and petrol in India or the delayed monsoons. But it is something to think about and certainly something to worry. Especially since majority of the people in this room, me included, are just plain sadists, who love to see others do in reel life, what we hold back ourselves from doing in real life.