Bollywood insiders react to Rakhi Vijan’s TV role resembling Radhe Maa

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Our films and television serials often make a mockery out of religious preachers. The latest are the press reports about television actress Rakhi Vijan playing godwoman Radhe Maa, nicknamed ‘Ghoongat Wali Mata’ in a daily soap Gangaa on &TV. So is playing godly personalities on television the new ‘in thing’?

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Sanjeev Gupta of Global Advertisers, patrons of Radhe Maa, is learning to take such nuances in his stride. “People mix piousness with frivolity nowadays,” he says. “And no amount of spirituality or knowledge seems to control their amateurish thoughts,” Gupta adds with sarcasm.

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Acclaimed Bollywood filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt terms the phenomenon as “unique”. Television superstar and popular film actor Ram Kapoor feels, “this is absolutely fine. You need to remember that all these characters in TV serials are fictional. They are meant to entertain and not to be taken too seriously.”

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Actress and firebrand social activist Pooja Bedi remarks, it’s all about entertainment. “From cops, judges, lawyers, religious figures, to religion itself… everything is susceptible to being caricatured.”

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She explains, that “the problem is not the world of entertainment. It’s us taking what’s meant to be entertainment, too seriously.” The spunky Priya Malik of Bigg Boss fame feels, “Radhe Maa is more famous for her antics than she is about religion. Plus, we live in a democracy and hence there’s nothing wrong with it.”

 

So there goes. Different people, different views. Sanjeev Gupta has the last word. “Even our Prime Minister Narendra Modi propagates diversity for a vibrant democracy. So what’s important is to show mutual respect and keep decorum even while one shows or portrays a difference of opinion.” True that.

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In the meantime, no amount of controversy, seems to be stopping the godwoman. Radhe Maa’s fame and reach only grows from strength to strength. This week, she contributed a sum to one Shree Sai Dwarkadheera Padyatri Mandal to help downtrodden people living in the hutments of remote areas in Borivali East in Mumbai. Woah!

Actress Soma Mangnaanii keen to return to politics on BJP ticket

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Television actress Soma Mangnaanii who was seen in the popular Zee TV show Jabb Love Hua, and earlier contested the local polls as an independent candidate from Mumbai’s posh Bandra locality, is “seriously considering” to return to politics in the upcoming BMC elections.

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The actress is currently the Secretary for BJP’s Sindhi Cell in Bandra and hopes to represent the party in the upcoming BMC elections in February 2017. “Serving people and spearheading causes like women empowerment, job creation for developing classes and being a voice for them, gives meaning to my life,” says Soma.

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She is particularly impressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s currency demonetization move, in an effort to cleanse the country from black money. “It is one of the boldest steps any PM has taken in the history of India,” she quips. “When I look at the changes Mr Modi is trying to bring, they make me feel, I should be part of the change to bring a better life to the people living around me.”

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Apart from acting and politics, the multi-faceted Soma dabbles in painting, designing, luxury brands and runs an NGO called Muktangan International Foundation. She has also hosted the horse-racing programme The Winning Post on Ten Sports, done advertisements, Bollywood events, music videos, and even acted in the Kollywood superhit Lesa Lesa directed by Priyadarshan.

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