Amidst sporting resurgence, budding talent and encouraging medal hauls, India's talk show `Satyamev Jayate' (SMJ) returned for a third season on Star Plus, highlighting the need for holistic improvement in India's sporting field - a call that won backing from none other than the Sports Minister.
In an unprecedented show of support to SMJ, Minister of youth affairs and sports Sarbananda Sonowal live-tweeted three times during the screening of episode one of season 3, calling for more suggestions to improve the culture of sports in India. “I promise not to leave any stone unturned to make sports a way of life,” the minister had tweeted.
Sonowal's tweets were among the more than 200 million impressions created in a single day on 5 October in an overwhelming show of positive sentiments to SMJ. More than 2 million people responded through missed calls to support the show’s initiative.
Star, as part of the `Mumkin Hai' (change is possible) initiative, separately organised a live dial-in with SMJ’s host Aamir Khan in Chandigarh on the d-day that saw Bharat Ratna Sachin Tendulkar dial-in to share about his initiative called ‘sports4all’ and how sports should be reinforced at the grassroot level.
“Aamir's @satyamevjayate episode was a déjà vu for me, sports4all will change country's future #MumkinHai,'' Tendulkar said via Twitter afterwards.
Legendary cricketer Kapil Dev also joined the live show and expressing his views, he said, “It is extremely encouraging to see how people in our country today are taking much interest in sports and paying attention to it in so many ways - whether it is in the form of discussions or even making blockbuster movies!”
Sonowal and Tendulkar were joined by the likes of politician Naveen Jindal, former top cop Kiran Bedi, former Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal in praising the show.
“Felt very good watching prog of @aamir_khan on #MumkinHai on sports! He has spread out for sports what @PMOIndia did for #SwachhBharat,” tweeted Bedi.
“Are authorities at sports federations responsible for the deteriorating conditions of sports in India?”Arvind Kejriwal retweeted Satyamev Jayate’s tweet.
“Satyamev Jayate has done what it does best - initiate a debate and inspire people to aspire for the better,” said Star India co-creator and CEO Uday Shankar. “The overwhelming response shows the thirst for change and that change is possible.”
Over the last three seasons, SMJ’s journey has been remarkable. Unlike shows that fade with time, SMJ has grown to become a positive change agent that continues to grip people from across the length and breadth of the country with issues that concern each and every Indian in the daily life. This can be validated by the immense viewer engagement that the show has received in the past and continues to, even in its third season.
Cricketer Yuvraj Singh was part of the live dial-in held in Chandigarh. He wrote afterwards on Twitter: “Just finished a show with @aamir_khan 4 @satyamevjayate wth kapil Dev. Gr8 topic, Sports builds character n creates a healthy mind n body.”
The show trended for 24 hours in India at No. 1, 2 and 3, and also trended worldwide at No. 1 on Twitter, demonstrating the mass support for the show’s message on sports. SMJ also received huge support from top celebrities on social media including from eminent personalities such as Harsha Bhogle and Virat Kohli.
“Wonderful, moving episode of #satyamevjayate. Never know where champions are coming from, just need to empower more people,” wrote Bhogle on Twitter.
Inspired by the show, Kohli tweeted, “Saw @satyamevjayate yesterday. Hope every school now starts to focus more on sport. Well said @aamir_khansport is education!”