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Fans wait in hope and despair
Syed Firdaus Ashraf |
April 19, 2007 16:18 IST
How far does a real fan go?
Special: The Abhi-Ash Wedding
Outside the Bachchan residences in Mumbai, some star-struck fans wait for eternity, while some just give up.
Gaurang Doshi from Surat is a tired fan. He is fed up waiting for the Bachchans and Aishwarya Rai, as he could not get a glimpse of either of them in the last two days.
Scene at Ash's house | Pic: By night
Gaurang is a college student, spending his vacations at his uncle's place in suburban Borivili. He, like many other fans and onlookers, has stationed himself outside the heavily guarded venues, hoping to catch a glimpse of the stars.
"Yesterday, I came in the morning in the hope that I will catch a glimpse of either Aishwarya Rai or Abhishek. I waited till afternoon but nothing happened and I left in despair," says Gaurang.
Rajesh Kumar Pandey from Allahabad, however, remains hopeful.
"Patience is what you need here," he informs others who are waiting. "They will have to come out eventually. Let us wait for some more time," says Pandey, a lean looking man.
Images: The festivities begin
Gaurang intervenes to say he can't wait any longer, because after all he has a stomach to feed and it is too hot to stay outdoors. He leaves in despair, but not without getting free advice from bystander Binay Mishra, of Kanpur.
"You should have come last night. In the daytime, there is nothing to do except stand under the hot sun. Last night, a lot of other actors came, and I am sure today also they will come and we will get a chance to see them," explains Mishra.
Both Pandey and Mishra do odd jobs to support themselves and have come to Mumbai recently with the dream of making it big. In their 20s, they feel Amitabh Bachchan is one of the biggest inspirations for any individual in Mumbai city and in India.
Unlike the media who have at least a makeshift enclosure with a barricade where they can stand with their cameras outside Amitabh's Juhu residences, ordinary people and fans find no such respite. They have to brave the heat and stand at whichever place they get nearby. Worse still, they are also hounded by policemen and private security guards who are always heckling them.
When I danced with Ash's guards
So what keeps them braving all this just for a glimpse?
"I always feel proud that Bachchan is from Allahabad. He has given name and recognition to my city. He is an idol for evey man residing in Allahabad. He came here from nowhere and made it big in Mumbai. So, obviously when his son is getting married I feel it is my family's wedding," says Pandey.
But if it is his family, why is he standing outside?
Pandey explains the rationale, "You see, I am an ordinary man. I have no status in life. Moreover, today you go and meet any A-grade government officer and there are chances you may not even get a glimpse of him. Here, I am at least sure I will get his glimpse. That is more than enough for me. I don't mind waiting and I am hopeful I will see him. It is an experience worth remembering for life."
Mishra concludes, "This is the biggest wedding of the century. I want to be a witness to it. I will tell my children and grandchildren that I saw this couple getting wed, and I will cherish my memories of this wedding all my life."
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