Big B finds Patna better than metros
PATNA: Patna talked about Amitabh Bachchan and he talked about Patna and Bihar – besides, of course, his upcoming movie ‘Aarakshan’ – on Wednesday.
“I have come here after so many years and I feel this place has definitely changed. Nitish Kumarji deserves kudos,” said the actor coming out of the CM’s residence at 1, Anne Marg where he intermingled with CM Kumar, his staff and family members for almost an hour. Asked if he is also a fan of the Big B, the CM smiled ear to ear and retorted, “Who is not (Amitabh’s fan)? I am also fond of Dilip Kumar and Devanand.”
“Patna does not look like a metropolitan city. It looks better,” the legendary actor told a presser earlier and added that he saw the city as he moved around in his SUV. “Bihar has witnessed tremendous growth. The ambience has changed,” he said.
In Patna to promote ‘Aarakshan’, the pinstriped celebrity expressed angst on widespread casteism in the country. “Every citizen should get equal attention and opportunity. Those hailing from humble background should be provided due prop,” he said and appreciated the ‘Super 30′ initiative of Bihari maths wizard Anand Kumar, saying Anandji is doing a selfless service to meritorious students.
Incidentally, Amitabh took tips from Anand to play a principled principal in the movie.
The actor, however, parried a question whether he was for or against reservation. “Such questions would continue to arise but reservation is a constitutional reality in our country and we will have to accept it,” he said and pleaded for quota on the basis of economic backwardness.
In reply to another query, the Big B said he has never differentiated between his son and daughter. “In my will, I will provide for equal share of my property for Abhishek and Shweta,” he said.
The angry young man of yesteryears, who reacts angrily in reel life even now when anyone calls him an old man, however, appeared to be calm while handling idiotic questions. “Bhai saaheb, garbhawati main nahi hoon (Brother, I am not pregnant),” he told the reporter who asked him whether he expected his son and daughter-in-law Aishwarya Rai Bachchan to be blessed with a son or a daughter.
Asked if he has any plan to do a movie on corruption, he said that he was game for it and would request Prakashji (Prakash Jha) to do something about it. As for Bhojpuri films, the Bachchan Sr said that he worked in two Bhojpuri movies for free because he was fond of the language.
‘Aarakshan’ director Jha said that making this film was a challenge. “Parents in our country try to provide education to children even if they do not have enough to eat. Against this backdrop, the issue of reservation needed to be revisited,” he said.
Bihar’s own Manoj Bajpai, who has also worked in ‘Aarakshan’, recalled the days when he would run away from his home to watch Amitji’s movies in Patna’s cinema halls. “I got the inspiration to become an actor from Amitji,” he said.
Bajpai played a true son of the soil as he defended his native people after the huge crowd of fans made a desperate attempt to get past the bouncers and touch the superstar of the silver screen. “Amitji, people of my state are not an indisciplined lot; they are simple but sentimental people, full of enthusiasm,” he said as if he was apologizing for the inconvenience, if any, caused to his role model.