In a world of new age Hindi stand-up comedians,a 36-year old former software engineer from Delhi,Sanjay Rajoura,wants to infuse freshness into Hindi comedy. Please do not compare me to the laughter champions. I do not rely on mimicry as a source of humour, he protests. Rajoura has been performing Hindi stand-up comedy in Delhi for six months in locally spoken Hindi,basing his humour on the current divide between the urban and rural classes.
I dont like to call myself a stand-up comedian,rather a storyteller. My stories are based on the lives of ordinary people and scenarios that we encounter in our daily lives in India. I tell stories in a funny manner with out any bias towards a community, he says.
Born and brought up in Delhi,Rajoura studied in a government school at Pusa Road but always shuttled between his village in Bulandshahar,Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. I never adopted the ethics of the city or left my village instincts. I have seen people who migrate from small towns get torn between the lifestyle demands of a city and their hometown and it is ironical how they strike a balance. I infuse my stories with satire and real life inferences, says Rajoura,who recently quit his decade-long well paying job in California with an IT company,to pursue his passion full-time.
His first public performance was at Mocha Bar,Nehru Place,in June during one of their Open Mike sessions. I casually went to one of the open mike nights which encourage people who want to express themselves. I started narrating a few stories and surprisingly people laughed. That was more than the encouragement I needed, says Rajoura,who also met Indias best comedy export Papa CJ there. He has agreed to promote me but nothing has been finalised yet, he says.
Rajoura has also dabbled in acting in between his trips to India and his exploits include a role in Spandan Banerjees 45-minute film Fiction,which was screened at the Osians Film Festival in 2008 and a six-minute video for Shubha Mudgals Tadpe Bin Badal song,a few years ago.
So,what explains his choice of Hindi as a medium to entertain? First,he says,is for the obvious reason that he is more comfortable with Hindi than with any other language and the other because he wants to promote the dying tradition of Hindi and Urdu comedy.