1st Kashmiri KBC winner yearns to return to his roots
New Delhi, Sep 8: It is a dream come true for Manoj Kumar Raina for having occupied a seat opposite super-star Amitabh Bachchan in the sixth session of Kaun Banega Crorepati. And becoming first Kashmiri to win Rs one crore in the KBC-6 has come as icing on the cake for him.
Having migrated from the Valley in 1990, the resident of village Chowgam in South Kashmir has all along yearned to go back to his roots. And the KBC has in fact provided him with an opportunity to realize this dream.
“Kashmir is my motherland. I want to go back and live in peace in the old traditions of brotherhood in a peaceful atmosphere. My first goal is to rebuild a house for my family in Kashmir before I go and live there,” was Raina’s instant reaction to an exclusive interview with Greater Kashmir.
Overwhelmed on having met Bachchan for the first time, he does not want it to leave it at that. “I also have a dream to do something for my community. Earlier, no one would have listened to me had I talked about such issues. But the KBC victory has uplifted my status and now I have the credibility to publically discuss these plans,” he observed.
Manoj is not content only with planning his rehabilitation back in the Valley. He also wants Bhachchan to reestablish his links with Kashmir. Interestingly, he has drawn a similarity between the super star’s fatal injury in 1982 and the onset of disturbance in Kashmir. “I told him that situation in Kashmir worsened after he was seriously injured during a film shooting. Since the situation has now improved you must visit Kashmir for shooting assignment. This will deliver a strong message to the world that normalcy has returned to the Valley,” he further said.
How did he reach the KBC forum? “I had been yearning to occupy a seat opposite Bachchan sahib and had been trying ever since its first episode. But unfortunately my telephone call never got connected until early this year. It was on 19 May, 2012, that finally I got through and subsequently cleared all preliminaries to reach the stage,” he added.
How did it feel to be sitting opposite the super star? "It was a dream come true. Amitabh is a living legend. He shows so much love and affection, he is so warm, and the way he talks to people, on and off the set, is magical. I felt as if I was talking to a senior member of my family. Such was the comfort level created by Amitabhji,” he said.
Did failure prevent him from retrying his luck? “Yes I had given up as my call never got connected to the KBC qualifier forum. But then an incident changed my thinking. While travelling from Reasi, where he is posted on a Railway project, to Jammu, I was handed over a short poem by my boss to get it framed for displaying it in offices to inspire workers and officials. The message read: ‘Koshish karne walon ke haar nahin hoti’. And that was the turning point. “When I tried next, perhaps my SMS was the first to reach the KBC. And rest is history,” he said.
Finally, the moment of happiness arrived when Bachchan announced that Manoj’s answer to the Rs 1 crore question was spot-on! Happiness knew no bounds as Manoj was joined on stage by his parents, brother and wife who shared this moment with him.
“I am speechless. I am not able to think or react now. This is surely a dream come true but it is something that is yet to sink in. I hope my victory will inspire people," an overwhelmed Manoj later said.
Lastupdate on : Sat, 8 Sep 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 8 Sep 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 9 Sep 2012 00:00:00 IST
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