In what is an indication of the growing influence of television
in India, especially satellite television, the BJP says it has decided
to rope in not juat a few particular TV artistes but a bunch of
them for poll related campaigning in the five states that go to
poll later this year, including Delhi and Madhya Pradesh.
"We haven't yet decided on the final list of, but would like to
have quite a few from the popular soaps to campaign for the party,"
BJP's spokesperson and Rajya Sabha (Upper House) Member of Parliament,
MA Naqvi, told indiantelevision.com today.
The serials that are on the list of BJP's poll campaign bureau
include almost all the Balaji Telefilms tear-jerkers like Kyunki.Saas
Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi and Kahaani Ghar Ghar Kii.
BJP is also not restricting itself to any particular channel or
its artistes which is indicative of the fact that some stars from
Sony's Kkusum too are likely to be roped in for campaigning, according
"We have realised that apart from the film stars. TV artistes too
are popular, especially in smaller towns and cities," Naqvi said.
But he refused to dish out any information whether such TV artistes
would be given some remuneration or be asked to campaign free of
However, all the television personalities contacted by indiantelevision.com
expressed surprise when asked about this. For one, Ekta Kapoor,
Creative Head, Balaji Telefilms, said, "There is no substance in
all this talk."
Sudha Chandran aka Ramola Sikand of Kaahin Kissii Roz said, "I
have not been approached to do any such campaigning."
The actor who plays the title role in Sony's Balaji soap Kkusum,
Nausheen Ali Sardar, had the most telling comment to make on the
BJP's starry plans. "Which elections are you talking about? When
are they going to be held?" she asked, completely clueless about
the upcoming assembly elections.
Earlier, the BJP had said Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan (even
the reclusive Aamir Khan's name was being bandied about) and yesteryear's
dream girl Hema Malini are likely to campaign for the party. But
Shah Rukh is not known to do such things free of cost and, going
by his current status, may charge the BJP a whopping amount. Naqvi
was also not forthcoming whether Khan would be paid a heavy price
But beyond the hype and hoopla of getting the crowds to election
rallies, there is no sure shot way of knowing whether the presence
of stars and celebrities in pre-election campaigns really convert
into votes and success at the hustings.
At the end of the day, stars may shine for sometime on the election
horizon, but there is no substitute for good hard work done by the
government and candidates at the ground level.