8:16 PM IST - Saturday November 22, 2014

Game for more reality shows: Swami Agnivesh

New Delhi, Nov 11 (IANS) Social activist Swami Agnivesh says his brief three-day stint in “Bigg Boss 5″ has left him tempted to taste reality television once again for the mass reach that entertainment channels provide.

“After being in the show, now I will wait to watch ‘Bigg Boss’ whenever I can. In fact, now I feel like coming on more such reality shows. I don’t know the available options, but I will be happy to be on such shows and channels which have such mass reach,” Agnivesh told IANS over phone from Mumbai, after coming out of the show Friday.

The 72-year-old Arya Samaj leader entered the Colors show Tuesday. He entered as a guest – to stay with 11 young, celebrity contestants in a secluded house under 24×7 camera surveillance. Agnivesh says it was a “rewarding experience”.

“People had scared me before I went for the show. Many people raised questions about my entry into the show. I knew it was a risk to go for such a show, and I think even for the channel, it was quite a risk to invite someone like me…for such a popular show… but in the end, I felt the combination was quite good,” he said.

“The girls on the show are so outspoken that I was scared that they might say something unpleasant, and I was apprehensive about the cameras being on for 24 hours. But touchwood, there was no embarrassing moment for me. It felt good and I think now I can go on such entertainment channels to spread social messages,” added the saffron-clad Agnivesh.

He wanted to talk about pertinent issues — casteism, alcoholism and corruption, during his stay in “Bigg Boss 5″. He is glad he could do so, but says only a limited amount of that conversation was perhaps aired on the channel. Nevertheless, he feels the small screen medium is extremely powerful.

“I think if people have a strong social message, television is an authentic and powerful medium for those who want to establish a better society. It is a good medium to reach the rural as well as well-educated people of the society and can help bring a positive change in the mindset of people.

“Just change in policies in courts and law can’t bring a mass change…it is reaching the public through different mediums like the television that can do so!” said Agnivesh.

He could already feel winds of change in the controversial “Bigg Boss 5″ house with his entry on the show. From the centre of catfights and backbiting, the house turned tad peaceful as Agnivesh stepped in.

“I was happy that there was no such fight when I was inside the house. I think all the contestants themselves felt at peace with my presence and didn’t feel like fighting. All of them gave me a lot of love and respect,” he added.

Agnivesh’s exit from the show will be aired Saturday.


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