Ninety-eight days, 14 contestants and one crore rupees. As curtains came down on season two of Big Boss, it is time for the participants to retrospect their participation in the Indian version of the reality show Big Brother and for the winner to rejoice.
"Even after winning MTV Roadies 5.0, I was almost broke. I had no work. At that time, Big Boss 2 was offered to me. I got some work and also Big Boss fed me for three months", a relieved looking Ashutosh Kaushik said, after winning the Rs one crore game show.
Still, the winner of two reality shows is not very sure what future holds for him.
"I do not know where I go from here. May be another reality show. I am game for Bollywood too. My dream of meeting Akshay Kumar has also been realised", said Kaushik, to whom the prize money and trophy was handed over by the Bollywood action hero.
"I wanted to show that one can achieve something even if he is not good at studies," Kaushik said.
For some it was mere joblessness, others self-redemption and damage control that had forced them to remain caged in a house for over three months, he added.
"I was in the news, but constantly for wrong reasons. For a change, I wanted some good publicity. I wanted that people across the country should know my real personality", said Raja Chowdhary, the first runner-up, who earlier had earned bad press for his relations with estranged wife and TV actress Shweta Tiwari.
"I am ready to participate in more reality shows. It does not have any script. What you do and what the audience sees is completely real. So everyone comes to know the real you," Raja said.
"The most important thing that I have learnt is that one can survive without everything. There was absolutely no communication with the world outside. Nothing to read," the first runner-up added.
Money played a big role for luring them to be away from all communication, their family and friends to lead a tell-all yet secluded life for 98 days.
"One crore is a big amount. I do not know how much I will get (now after not being the winner)," Zulfi Syed, the second runner-up said.
"But come what may, how big the prize money be, I cannot compromise with my values and principles. I cannot be abusive and bitchy. Now after the show is over, I am feeling much relieved and a little confused on seeing so many people suddenly, said Zulfi, best remembered for his role in Akbar Khan's Taj Mahal.
"Living with 13 others, who are almost strangers to you is a challenge. At times you are angry but cannot vent the fury on anyone. That's how one learns to be more patient in his life," Zulfi added.
The reasons for participation were much simple for Payal Rohatgi, another housemate.
"Although I am in the industry for last seven years, many did not notice me. I wanted that one and all should be able to put my name and face together," said Payal, whose movie Dil Kabaddi, is soon to hit the screens.
But the most interesting accomplishment was that of former Miss World Diana Hayden.
"Now my Hindi is much better. I can even give a complete interview in Hindi," Diana said, adding, she took part in the show as she was on look out for some challenge.