‘The image was merely a front’

Mid Day - - TELEVISION/WEB - Dutta, LETTY MARIAM ABRA­HAM letty.abra­ham@mid-day.com Nikita

Shoot­ing for an un­der­wa­ter se­quence for Haasil went awry when pro­tag­o­nist

who suf­fers from hy­dropho­bia, kept chok­ing while film­ing in Mau­ri­tius. She was able to com­plete the scene with help from Vat­sal Seth. FIRST im­pres­sions are truly de­cep­tive, as is ev­i­dent when we meet Raghu Ram. The pro­ducer-an­chor made a ca­reer off an image that show­cased him as mean, and ver­bally-abu­sive, à la Amer­i­can pro­ducer Si­mon Cow­ell. But Ram, who is set to host the show En­ter­tain­ment Ki Raat, says that the im­pres­sion was “a front”. In con­ver­sa­tion with mid-day, Ram talks about his show, and re­defin­ing his image af­ter the game show, Road­ies. Hon­estly, I don’t use abu­sive lan­guage. That was merely an image that had to be cre­ated for that show [Road­ies]. I had to be that guy to evoke a re­sponse from the per­son [par­tic­i­pants] sit­ting in front of me. I have also writ­ten a book about my ex­pe­ri­ence [Rearview: My Road­ies Jour­ney]. How­ever, I wouldn’t call it be­ing abu­sive, merely pas­sion­ate. I wanted to see how it would [en­able me to] show­case my per­son­al­ity. I like to find new ways to ex­press my­self. This show lets me do that. The au­di­ence will see the dif­fer­ence once they watch the show. It’s noth­ing like a roast. My agenda will be to en­sure that ev­ery­one has fun. It must be en­ter­tain­ing for the guest, view­ers and me. Artistes take them­selves too se­ri­ously once they be­come celebri­ties. Writ­ing the book is an achieve­ment. I am a col­lege dropout; I wrote weekly col­umns for news­pa­pers in Pun­jab and Chandi­garh for free. I think writ­ing a book is pretty bad a**. For me this is the pin­na­cle of achieve­ment. So much has been spo­ken about me, and I’ve never re­ally clar­i­fied [my stance], so, this was me telling my story. Your ques­tion un­der­val­ues his place in my life. If it wasn’t for my brother, I’d have an or­di­nary life. There is noth­ing spe­cial about me, ex­cept Ra­jiv. We are do­ing a lot of work for our pro­duc­tion house. We’ve re­cently signed a show with Ama­zon Prime. The third sea­son of our col­lab­o­ra­tion, Aisha, will go on floors soon. Be­sides this, Ra­jiv and I just wrapped up the last episode of MTV Dropout. We’re look­ing at some other shows too. Hurt­ing peo­ple. My mar­riage hasn’t worked out and I have not been there for peo­ple when they needed me. I can­not. I am too shy. I have never spo­ken to a stranger in my life un­less it is for work. Some­one has to hook me up. Ever since en­tered the Bigg Boss house, she has been trolled in­ces­santly for pick­ing fights. But, the ac­tor has found sup­port in Geeta Phogat, Krushna Ab­hishek and Ar­jun Bi­jlani.

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