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19 Jul 2024, Edition - 3293, Friday

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Reality of the Reality Shows: ‘Children shouldn’t be subjected to this’

Indrani Thakurata


Bengaluru: We have always marvelled at the talent of some of our little champions who entertained us on our small screen. Reality show has spared no one. We see very small children competing with each other for the coveted title. But very few of us know the reality of these reality shows.

Recently, a tweet from the respected director Shoojit Sircar brought the issue on forefront. Concerned about children’s innocence and emotions, filmmaker Shoojit Sircar has requested authorities to ban reality television shows that have little children. His tweet read, “Humble request to authorities to urgently ban all reality shows involving children.it’s actually destroying them emotionally & their purity.”

Following the remark, Director Amol Gupte threw some light on the conditions that they live in while shooting. He was quoted saying that, “They are brought from distant towns to Mumbai and huddled into cheap hotels with their parents. Every morning, they have to travel to the TV studio for rehearsals. These kids are wrenched away from all normal activities and are thrown into a single-minded devotion to lending their voices to these reality shows. They are made to shoot for countless hours, sometimes in humid non-air conditioned rooms. It’s barbaric.”

Agreeing wholeheartedly, Ankita Virmani, a Journalist who covers showbiz says, “Yes, I think these reality shows are cruel and the destructive in nature. Children should not be subjected to such competition and public scrutiny.

These kids are given a false sense of success, which destroys them for life. The arc lights are only there for sometime, but they lose perspective. We should have stricter laws.” Talking about her son who acted in the film Udaan, Neha Boradia says, “Aayan Boradia has never participated in any reality show. I strongly feel that the pressure is detrimental to a child’s psyche. The drama and the public announcements are not good for the small children.”Adding another perspective Naresh Gaddam,Assistant Casting Director for TV Reality Shows says , “I myself have done reality shows and have done the casting for shows as well. TV is such a medium that everyone wants to be on it to get famous. When it comes to kids, the parents encourage the kids to participate in reality shows .

Parents see it as a big platform, and are ready for the consequences as well. The point is, if we want kids to participate in reality shows, we need to change the perception of the parents especially from small town.”

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