reality shows

‘Bigg Boss’ 10 contestant Swami Omji needs to be nominated for eviction – now

The self-styled godman is peddling a noxious cocktail of misogyny and religion in the name of entertainment.

For a show that boasts the likes of Dolly Bindra, Rakhi Sawant, Rahul Mahajan and even Kamaal R Khan as its alumni, Bigg Boss has really outdone itself this time.

The tenth season of the reality show on Colors has introduced a twist on an established premise: the makers have introduced the concept of celebrities and commoners (nicknamed Indiawale). Seven decently well-known faces from the television and movie worlds masquerading as “celebs” share space with eight members of the so-called Indiawale or the common public. One of them, Priyanka Jagga, has already been shown the door in the first week.

This being Bigg Boss, the members who represent Indiawale seem to have been selected with an eye on the television rating points meter. So there is the brash hothead Manveer Gurjar and Manu Punjabi living up to the jock stereotype. There is the bespectacled Naveen Prakash, who can be sly and underhand. And, oh, there is Swami Omji.

Of course, this is not the first time the luxurious Bigg Boss house in Lonavla has locked up a religious figure. The fifth season saw Swami Agnivesh enter the house for three days, where he counselled housemates on the benefits of yoga. Omji, though, is not like Agnivesh. In fact, he’s unlike any other Bigg Boss contestant before him – and that is saying a lot.

The self-styled godman has, in his brief tenure, already claimed that he has saved the country from a missile attack through this tantric powers, informed host Salman Khan that he will use his powers to find the Bollywood star a “perfect wife”, boasted to Deepika Padukone about how he assaulted Elizabeth Hurley, forcibly held and threatened contestant Lopamudra Raut to keep her mouth shut about a secret of his, asked Gaurav Chopra to stay away from another female housemate as she was “characterless”, and even revealed that he will star in a Rs 100 crore biopic of himself. Phew.

There’s something unmistakably disturbing about the self-styled godman. Unlike, say, Bindra or Sawant, Omji rarely loses his cool. He delivers his barrage of misogynistic comments not in outbursts of anger (though even that is hardly forgivable), but in calm, methodical tones.

Omji has quite a personal history. He has assaulted a fellow female panellist on a television news debate, issued death threats to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, and threatened an environmental activist for opposing Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s World Cultural Festival. Not to mention having cases filed against him for theft and hoarding arms.

Omji and his fellow contestants. Courtesy Colors.
Omji and his fellow contestants. Courtesy Colors.

Considering that Omji has fought with almost every person inside the house, he has not even been nominated for eviction in the first two weeks. The reasons are tactical. Contestants seek to eliminate stronger competition. Omji, despite his transgressions, is not considered a serious competitor. The housemates have started treating him like the resident crank, to be laughed at but not taken seriously.

Except, that is dangerous. Granted that no one watches Bigg Boss to learn life lessons. People watch the show for the controversy, the sparring and the odd romantic spark. Conflict is a key driver, and in Omji, the tenth season has a trump card.

But Omji also brings to the controversial series a noxious cocktail of misogyny and religion. The contestants laugh off Omji’s extremely problematic assertions, and he shows no signs of turning over a new leaf. Having blatant sexism being thrown around on national television without any sort of checks is troubling, whichever way you see it. Let’s hope Omji gets nominated soon and makes an early exit. Because this is one entertainment device we could do without.

We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

A phone so stunning that it deserves its own photoshoot

Presenting the Moto X4, crafted to perfection.

Precision-crafted glass and metal design, an anodised aluminium frame, easy to hold and featuring beautiful contours, the Moto X4 is crafted to perfection indeed.

With the distinctive placement of the rear cameras, this phone makes a great subject for a photographic series.

Gaurav Sawn Photography
Gaurav Sawn Photography

The light reveals the fluidity of its body; curves that fit perfectly in the contours of a palm.

Gaurav Sawn Photography
Gaurav Sawn Photography

Reclining on a bed of satin, the glass-encased phone blends into the folds of the luxurious fabric.

The slimness, seamlessness and solidity of the phone make for a great profile shot.

A stunning design which is IP68 rated water-resistant too, it is as beautiful as it is strong.

We partnered with photographer Gaurav Sawn to create this series. Says Gaurav, “The glass sandwich design looks extremely good and the reflections on the back panel make the phone stand out. This is a phone that is best used without a case. The curved corners were also very comfortable to hold. All in all, really enjoyed shooting this phone!”

While this phone is elegant and crafted to perfection, it is also extremely tough, being protected from scratches with Corning® Gorilla® Glass that stretches all the way around.

You don’t need to sacrifice of performance either. It’s packed with a 2.2 GHz octa-core Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 630 processor and comes with a TurboPower™ Charger which means hours of power in minutes!

For the music lover, this phone is a boon. With simultaneous connectivity of up to four Bluetooth® audio devices at the same time, you can build your own stereo system without worrying about cables.

The dual rear cameras – a 12MP that lets you focus faster and get great results even on dark, cloudy days, and an 8 MP camera, with wide angle lens makes your most ambitious photos look all the more impressive.

To get your hands on the Moto X4, and experience perfection, click here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Motorola and not by the Scroll editorial team.