Towards the end of the first episode of Satyamev Jayate, Aamir Khan requests viewers to get a notepad and pen to note down few important points. Like an obedient student, I got up from my chair, searched for a paper and pen and came back to sit in front of the TV as quickly as possible. Now when I look back, I would have even jumped out of the window had Aamir made such a request! That's the kind of impact the show and Aamir generated! Satyamev Jayate is easily one of the best things to have happened on TV in a long time!
I watch TV on a very limited basis. A little bit of Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah, Comedy Circus and not to forget, CID (Yes – I watch it every Fri and Sat – I admit shamelessly!). I have a total dislike for any kind of the so-called reality shows. However, when Aamir Khan announced that he'll come up with his own TV show, I got intrigued. I was sure that if it's Aamir, it has to be interesting and also sensible. Also, the beautiful theme song and the manner in which Aamir told so much about the show to the media but still kept it under wraps made me even more curious!
And I sat down on Sunday May 6, 2012 at 11am in front of the TV, little realizing what laid in store for me. With more and more reality and other kind of shows cropping up, one assumes that the effect of television as an effective tool is slowly waning off. But Satyamev Jayate proves the notion wrong. The opening episode throws light on the perils of female infanticide but doesn't discuss anything new. Almost every one of us is aware of this burning issue and has read about it in newspapers or in schools and colleges. But it's in Satyamev Jayate where it actually hits you how grave and profound the problem has turned out to be in our country.
With the first two guests speaking about the horrors of forceful abortion, one assumes that stuff like these happen only in small towns and among the middle or lower income groups. But the third guest, the doctor from Delhi, shatters all the myths as she recounts the horrific tale of her 'well-educated' in-laws towards her twin daughters. And if you feel that it can't get more shocking than this, you are wrong! The statistics and the experiences of people in the various corners of the country that the episode discusses later on hit you even harder! The most shocking of all has to be the case of the journalists who daringly carried out a series of sting operations and exposed the doctors indulging in illegal acts and yet not a single culprit got convicted! Also the attitude of the judges who felt that making a demand for a male child was justified at once shatters the image of 'India Shining'.
Thankfully, details of none of the in-laws of the women who came on the show were revealed. It would have had negative repercussions and the show would have got embroiled in useless controversies.
Before the first episode culminated, Ram Sampat and Swanand Kirikire paid a befitting tribute to the issue with their song 'O Re Chiraiya'. It helped the show end on a positive note. Worth watching at this juncture was Aamir who was keenly listening to the song and signaled the kids to come and join them. Cute! His eyes did get moist at few places and cynics have dubbed it as 'fake'. But I can safely say that nothing in this TV show can be fake – it's as real as it can be! And only Aamir could have come up with something like this! I suddenly realized that this is not the first time – Aamir have touched our hearts and forced us to think even before. Didn't Taare Zameen Par left us all stunned? Same goes for Rang De Basanti and 3 Idiots. Hats off Aamir!
I usually enjoy frequenting plexes and watching films on Sunday mornings. But for the next 12 weeks, I would be instead sitting in front of my TV to catch the episodes of this outstanding TV show. There are plenty of issues plaguing the country and it would be great as Aamir will be discussing about, possibly, problems in Kashmir and Maoist areas and about wildlife conservation, child marriage, farmer suicides, deforestation, water scarcity etc. I am already looking forward for the weekend!
Dil Pe Lagegi Tabhi Baat Banegi. Totally agree AK!