Amitabh Bachchan’s visit to Lucknow could not materialise, but in Patna on Wednesday he was greeted by no less than the Bihar CM, Nitish Kumar himself.
At the press interaction, the superstar fielded questions about his family life, before anyone evinced any interest in the film he was there to promote. So, while one enthusiastic fan had to make do with a taciturn “yes” from the grandad-to-be, when asked whether the extra glow on his face is ‘the grandfather effect’, other queries on Aishwarya’s impending mommyhood failed to get much out of him. Till another query in an attempt to corner Bachchan on the exact month of the baby’s arrival was met with a smile and a laconic reply: “I’m not the one who’s pregnant, bhaiya.”
Another question was whether Amitabh would want a grandson or granddaughter. Again, Amitabh did not make any effort to hide his amusement at such a question being thrown at him, but was ready with a real life example to illustrate his point. “I think this should be an answer – that I have created a will in which I clearly state that after my death all my assets will be divided equally among my son and daughter.”
Reporters were desperate to keep Big B talking. What is your personal opinion on reservation? Do you support it? Does poverty have a caste? “As a citizen I believe in the Indian constitution, and reservation is a constitutional reality, so I will follow it. But I also believe that everyone should first be given equal opportunity and then any decision should be based on merit.”
Getting a tad nostalgic, he said, “My parents had a love marriage. Babuji kayastha pariwaar se thay, my mother was a Sikh. When my dad enrolled me in school, he gave me his pen name as surname, and not Srivastava. As kids we did not even know what caste was all about.” The nostalgia lingered as Amitabh added that when his father was unwell, he would ask Amitabh to play one of his films in the evening. “Babuji used to say that in three hours, a film gives you poetic justice. Through my films I try to attain that,” he said.
Questions on Big B’s contribution to Bhojpuri films came next. The actor again dodged the question to express an opinion on the status of Bhojpuri film industry. “I enjoyed a lot working in Bhojpuri films but more than that, I did those two Bhojpuri films for my make-up artiste Deepak Saawant who wanted to get into film production.” TOI