Reality show Satyameva Jayate has rekindled debate on female foeticide. Should we laud Aamir's stardom for reviving the issue that has bogged the country for ages? Will he be able to change society's mindset?
BANGALORE, INDIA: Suddenly, female foeticide has become a national challenge in India, where 2000 girls are aborted illegally every day. Should we thank Aamir Khan or his debut Satyameva Jayate, a reality show on TV which in its first episode steered nation's attention to foeticide?
Girls in India are yet to overcome that gender bias laid by a society that swears by male chauvinism and is obsessed with stardom. If female foeticide is a serious issue, Aamir Khan is a star. So, when Aamir hosts a show like Satyameva Jayate, it can't afford not to be a superhit in real sense and in essence, it needs to be seen if it will change the mindset of people. The show is aired on Star as well as national channel Doordarshan, which is still popular in rural India.
Its reach was guaged by the number of hits on social media. The show was aired at 11 am on Sunday and by 9pm, Satyameva Jayate's website received 42,000 likes on Facebook and 3,800 Tweets on Twitter.
It is another story that the show has landed in a legal hurdle following plagiarism allegations. Euphoria's singer Palash Sen has sent a legal notice to Satyameva Jayate directors alleging that parts of the show's anthem are a copy of a song from Euphoria's 2000 album Phir Dhoom.
Sen's polite contention is that he would have readily agreed to share the music if he was just asked by the team. What didn't really go well with him is the 'stealing' part. He would have been more than happy to be associated with the show, which let Aamir Khan steal all the limelight.
Going by the messages on Twitter, it seems Aamir Khan's stardom knows no boundaries on screens-- big or small. Kiran Bedi wrote: "I would give full marks to Aamir Khan's TV Prog 'Satyamev Jayate', very creative, evidence based and emotionally connecting, inspiring! Thank u."
Preity Zinta wrote: "Watching Aamir Khan on 'Satyamev Jayate' discussing female foeticide. I love this effort from him and thank him as a woman."
Aamir Khan has a clear explanation about his role: "I am no one to bring change or solve anything... neither (is) the government. I can only keep the issues in front of everyone. The change should come from within. One person cannot improve or bring solution to an issue."
Mr Khan, we know that. What can an actor do than just parrot scripts in front of the camera. But it's still amazing to see the huge impact those words have on people, who may at least talk about the issue, if not do anything in practical.
Now, the question is: Will the hype created by Aamir Khan on Satyameva Jayate live up to its name? Will Aamir be able to influence people and change society's mindset? Will female foeticide numbers come down because of the programme? Do let us know.