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Humour best form of protest, says Varun Grover

Varun says humour is the best form of protest and it connects with haters too.

lucknow Updated: Dec 19, 2017 14:12 IST
Deep Saxena
Deep Saxena
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Netfilx,Secret Games,Varun Grover
Varun Grover, Rahul Ram and Sanjay Rajoura in Lucknow.(HT Photo)

Doing a stand-up comic act and making jokes of people in power comes with the risk of a backlash.

“Satires surely offend some people but then it needs to be said. I believe in Gandhiji’s principle of satyagrah. One should keep speaking truth again and again. By doing so, it surely strengthens the truth,” says writer-lyricist and member of ‘Aisi Taisi Democracy’ Varun Grover.

Besides Grover, other members of the group Sanjay Rajoura and singer-musician Rahul Ram were also in Lucknow for a performance.

“Getting abused on Twitter or being trolled is a part and parcel of the situation we face. But it is scary for family members. However, the fact is whatever we say is happening around us. In India, we have content all over. We wake up to loads of content which is the food for a comedian. So, in a way it’s the people who are guiding our content which actually is very democratic,” he adds.

Varun says humour is the best form of protest and it connects with haters too. “Humour connects everyone. I may not like the right-wing but I follow their humour and similarly they too follow mine. It is a different thing that they abuse me on twitter but it actually connects people,” he adds.

Making of Democracy!

Rahul, who sings his acts and is an integral part of Indian Ocean band, says: “I first saw Sanjay’s stand-up act 10 years ago. I loved it and wished if some songs can be added to it. After six years (2014), he called me up during lean summer phase and said he and Varun are planning something and wanted me to join them. So, we collaborated together. Personally, I am a very reactive guy. They pushed me and here we are.”

“We met accidentally and it was tough to work together with the kind of shows Indian Ocean does. We succeeded in finding time together,” Varun adds.

The group was formed at a time when the government at the Centre had changed. “A lot of people say that we formed the group to make fun of the new government which is wrong. We would have enough content had the same party returned to power. Content is available all over,” says Rahul.

They are now planning to come on digital space. “It is very easy to nail someone by misinterpreting a portion of some act. Most of the time people get entangled in problem due to content on Internet. So, we are now looking to bring full-fledged acts online,” says Sanjay who comes from Muzaffarnagar and is now settled in NCR.

‘Film not a priority’

The film industry has lapped Indian Ocean the way they are – as a band. “This is want we want. We are neither capable of becoming full-time film musicians nor do we have that desire. Making a four-minute film song on someone’s lyrics and desired tune is not our way of working. We make our own kind of music and work in a way of committee where the best music comes out after it’s approved by majority,” says Rahul.

“When ‘Are ruk ja re bande’ came out, Indian Ocean had already completed 15 years. The push that one song gave was huge. Similarly, Bollywood gives a big leap which can’t be ruled out. Scenario has changed in films also with new directors who are more exposed to Indi-music. We have done four songs for a film Chakki in which one song has been written by Varun (Grover) while two are by Piyush (Mishra) bhai,” he adds.

Varun’s next

Next coming up is a Netfilx series Secret Games which is first from India on the medium. Then there is a film by Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwani that will come next year.

“I have also written Diwakar Banerjee’s film Sandeep Aur Pinki Faraar which is nearing completion. I have some upcoming film songs too,” Varun says.

He says he will take some time for film making. “Next year, I will get serious and start working on it. But, there is still some time. It will happen for sure but when I can’t say,” he adds.

First Published: Dec 19, 2017 14:12 IST