reality check

The Rakhi Sawant Horror Show: ‘Ban ceiling fans to prevent suicide’

Rakhi Sawant’s latest quotable quote has unsurprisingly landed in the middle of the controversy surrounding the Pratyusha Banerjee suicide.

Rakhi Sawant has been missing in action of late, but as is befitting a reality television star, she has used the Pratyusha Banerjee suicide to remind people of what she looks – and sounds – like. Sawant’s outrage is always expressed in front of a bevy of cameras and is aimed at the easily scandalised. So when she declared that ceiling fans need to be removed from all homes because too many women were hanging themselves from them, we were relieved that the Rakhi Sawant Horror Show remains in business.

Sawant was among the many television actors who flocked to the cremation of their colleague Banerjee to make sure that they got their 15 minutes of fame in the bargain. We have to admit that we partially agree with Sawant’s pronouncements at a press conference later that it is more important to ban ceiling fans than chant “Bharat Mata ki jai.” Please take note of the ceiling fan she brought along to the conference (though you are likely to spend a few seconds on wondering where she sourced it from).

‘Remove all ceiling fans.’

This is hardly the first time Sawant has said something so risible that it makes the headlines. Her insouciance, frankness, lack of a filter, call it what you will, endears her to those who think that most celebrities are fake. Sawant has enough of a sense of humour to remind her fans that vast portions of her body are not what she was born with, but the result of the skill of plastic surgeons.

There was the time she wanted to marry Prime Minister Narendra Modi (or more accurately, be his second wife, since he hasn’t yet divorced Jashodha).

Rakhi Modi nee Sawant?

Sawant has also declared her willingness to share the rest of her life with Indian National Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi. Her skills as a comedienne and political satirist are wasted on literal-minded Bollywood.

Or Rakhi Gandhi nee Sawant?

Virat Kohli too – why not, and so what if the ace cricketer was going out with actress Anushka Sharma at the time? Sawant didn’t spare Sharma’s alleged lip-job either.

Rakhi Kohli nee Sawant sounds best.

Sawant might have had better luck marrying into politics if the Rashtriya Aam Party, which she joined to contest the election to the Lok Sabha in 2014, had made an impression to voters. She won all of 2,006 votes from the Mumbai North-West constituency, and joined the Republican Party of India (Ramdas Athavale faction) afterwards.

The Rashtriya Aam Party theme song.

Clearly, Rakhi Sawant (real name Neeru) understands the media better than politics, as is evident from her insights into the controversial AIB Roast. This is vintage Sawant, sounding utterly sincere in her pronouncements while speaking in the third person as well as utterly cynical in throwing scraps to the media scrum.

‘The AIB Roast has been doctored, cheating is involved.’

She has been perturbed by the mainstream acceptance of porn star Sunny Leone – once again, proof of her brilliant ability to hang on by her talons to the latest bandwagon in town. “We are paying Sunny to keep her clothes on,” she declared. In a mock serious interview with the website Bollywood Hungama, she shares her views on Congress leader Digvijaya Singh’s second marriage, plastic surgery, and jailed businesswoman Indrani Mukerjea – eclectic, to say the least.

As long as there are entertainment channels eager to end the day’s programming with a clip that has the potential of going instantly viral, Rakhi Sawant will never ever be put out to pasture. With her on the screen, it's greener on this side of the fence.

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