After a year’s delay for clearance by I&B Ministry, controversial chat show Sach Ka Saamna returns, host-actor Rajeev Khandelwal admits he wouldn’t want to host next edition of Desi Moment Of Truth.
Controversial chat show Sach Ka Saamna’s second season finally premiered on Sunday night on the newly launched Hindi general entertainment channel, Life Ok. The show was marred by several controversies in its 50-episode run during the first edition that aired between July and September in 2009.
The Star network that aired it, and quiz whiz Siddhartha Basu’s Big Synergy that produces it, waited for a year for the Information and Broadcasting Ministry’s permission to start work on the second edition of the Desi version of the American show, Moment Of Truth.
The I&B authorities finally gave it a go-ahead in February this year.
“It was a relief that they had cleared the show. I was silently rejoicing because I still had to sign on the dotted line to anchor it, although in principle, I had told Babu (Siddhartha) that I will do another season for sure,” says actor-anchor Rajeev Khandelwal, adding, “I really don’t know what took the ministry so long to clear it because I didn’t find anything about it controversial. The so-called moral police decided on the country’s behalf that we were attacking value-systems.”
He rues that the social and political corridors accused the show of encouraging voyeurism.
“We were even blamed for a couple of suicides in some remote cities. No one noticed that the show is about human stories in the format of a game show,” says Rajeev, adding, “People volunteered to use our platform to speak up. The contestants were peaceful. It was the others who overreacted, and how! I wish the so-called public interest groups paid attention to the bigger issues plaguing society, instead of picking on a show for free publicity.”
The first episode of the first season of Sach Ka Saamna broke records in 2009 with the highest opening ratings for a non-fiction show.
This season, without any celebrity featuring on the hot seat, the show will be aired throughout the week and will comprise only 24 to 26 episodes.
Sach Ka Saamna 2’s underlying theme is corruption. Given that this season is shorter than the first would Rajeev return as the host for the next?
“When the previous season wrapped up, I was hungry for more and so was the audience,” he says, adding, “But I’d like to take a break next season because I don’t want to be typecast as the host of a show. Though whenever it happens, I’ll definitely tune in to watch.”