Television

Records tumble at AXN's 'World Record Holder Contest'

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For action channel AXN, generating local interest in its programming is not about creating Indian programming or even Indian language feeds. It's all about bringing events linked to their popular shows to India. 

Saturday morning in Mumbai was witness to just that with the channel conducting the AXN World Record Holder contest in association with HP Deskjet. Cheered on lustily by an enthusiastic crowd witnessing the first of its kind event in India, five youngsters attempted to do the country proud by setting records in different categories - some strange, others not so strange but that's Guinness records for you.

Seven officials timed the event and made sure that the feats complied with the strict requirements of the Guinness records. They also had to make sure that press photographers did not obstruct the television camera at any point while the feats were performed otherwise the participant runs the risk of being disqualified on a technicality. 

The first category was maximum pull-ups in one minute. Prior to today the category did not exist in the Guinness Book of World Records and so the benchmark was set. Prasanna Pednekar set the record with 48 pull-ups in 47.56 seconds. 

Bibhuti Nayak a journalist stole the thunder however. He broke two records. First he performed 133 palm pushups in one minute erasing the previous record of 116. Interestingly he also holds the record of doing 819 backhand push-ups in one hour. Next three cement blocks placed on his groin were successfully broken by another person with a sledgehammer. The previous record had two cement blocks.

Also on display was Nilesh Gulgule who attempted to break 315 planks of wood using his fist. The previous record was 314.

Witnessing the excitement was V-P marketing AXN Asia Gregory Ho. He said that the feats being attempted by the participants were incredible not just by Indian but also by world standards. He pointed out that the youngsters were not motivated by money or fame but by a driving passion to do something which would give that extra meaning to their daily lives. The initiative was an attempt by the channel to give people the chance to experience the buzz first hand, Ho said. 

AXN also announced six winners for its "viewing marathon". The show was conducted from 10-12 July and started with 14 participants. As mentioned earlier they had to watch episodes of Ripley's Believe It or Not continuously for a period of 48 hours, 15 minutes and six seconds. Vishal Vyas, Chandan Rathod, Satpal Singh, Darshan Bagga, Bhavin Shah and Ami Desai broke the record which was previously held by an American who saw NYPD Blue for 46 hours, 30 minutes and 50.91 seconds. 

Speaking on this, Ho said that the achievement was not as simple as it looked. Watching the tube for even 72 hours was no big stretch as long as one got regular sleep. The participants were given only 15-minute breaks after viewing for eight hours. He also mentioned that one contestant put off the need to answer the call of nature for four hours which was literally a triumph of mind over matter. 

Now all that remains to be seen is whether or not the Guinness World Records Committee in America ratifies the records. 

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