Updated: September 14, 2019 10:40:17 am
On Friday, Kaun Banega Crorepati 11 found its first crorepati in Sanoj Raj. The young man from Jehanabad, who is currently in New Delhi preparing for IAS exams, effortlessly answered 15 questions correctly to win the amount. His simplicity and humble personality also impressed host Amitabh Bachchan.
Post his big win, Sanoj spoke exclusively to indianexpress.com about his experience, “It was a great time on the game show. I also managed to earn a good amount and am so excited to become the first crorepati of the season. KBC is a show that I have followed for a long time. When I would correctly answer questions asked on the show, I would calculate that I could have won so much money (laughs). That’s how I decided to try my luck as soon as I turned 18. After a long wait, I managed to clear the audition. It has been a long journey.”
The 25-year-old had mentioned to Amitabh Bachchan that while he is happy in his life, he is not satisfied. He had shared that post the game, he might feel satisfied. When asked what’s his take on the same now, he smiled to say, “I am indeed overjoyed with whatever I managed to attain in the game but I am definitely not satisfied yet. I am prepping for civil services presently. Once I manage to crack the exams and make a career in that space, I feel I would be satisfied in life.”
Sanoj Raj was the last contestant from the week’s contestants to get through the fastest finger first round. Sharing what he was going through while waiting for his chance, he said, “Initially, I was confident that I would get through in the first couple of rounds. But every time I ended up in the top three but was never the fastest. It was plain bad luck that I wasn’t being able to clear it. I thought that I would have to go back without getting a chance to be on the hot seat and was already planning to try again later. But my father and uncle were really disappointed as they wanted to see me there after coming so far.”
Ask him what was his reaction when Amitabh Bachchan announced him as the crorepati and Sanoj shared, “I was stunned for a moment. I couldn’t believe it and couldn’t even react. Just moments back I was sitting there waiting for my turn on the hot seat, and here I was the first crorepati of the season. I couldn’t sleep the entire night thinking of this big moment in my life. I haven’t decided how will I use the prize money and will thus hand it over to my father. He will plan it best.”
The IAS-aspirant further shared that not just his family, his entire village is in a celebratory mood. “Every kid in my district is overjoyed. The school where I used to teach, more than 5000 students promised to watch my episode with their family. Even many on social media have changed their display picture to my image. All the love and appreciation is very heartwarming. While many would say that money and fame can change a person, I feel, if you are grounded, nothing can affect you.”
Giving more insight into his life, the crorepati from Bihar shared, “An IAS was appointed in my neighbourhood when I was in school. In just about a couple of years, I realised he really worked towards the upliftment of the area. Political ministers are in power for only five years but civil servants are hired permanently and can do wonders if they want. That’s when I decided to become an IAS. I was an engineer, and quit my job to focus on my aim.”
Talking about his experience with host Amitabh Bachchan, Sanoj shared, “I have always considered Amitabh Bachchan as one of my idols. He is also my favourite actor along with Ayushmann Khurrana. It was a dream to even see him from a distance. So you can imagine how I felt sitting opposite him on the hot seat. I could speak to him and more importantly, he discussed my life. It was a very special moment.”
When asked to share the highlights from his stint on KBC, he said, “There are many big moments. Be it the moment I was told that I would be on the hot seat, or when on my request the air conditioner’s temperature was increased, everything was special. The biggest moment, of course, would be when Bachchan sir said that I had won a crore and even when he told my friends to find a girlfriend for me (laughs).”
Kaun Banega Crorepati 11 airs Monday-Friday at 9 pm on Sony TV.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.