Tedhi Baat – The Siddhu Episode (played by Shekhar Suman)


Gurpal interviews Navjot Singh Siddhu (played by Shekhar Suman) in this episode of Tedhi Baat.  You know that there is mischief afoot when Siddhu (played by Shekhar Suman) opens with a thumping on the table  – and starts firing questions at the interviewer (Gurpal Singh)

Tere ko dekhta hun to yakeen nahin hota – ki aisa bhi serious kisam ka koi sardar ho sakta hai! Sach Sach Bata – Khul ke hasse huye, kinne saal ho gaye? (When I look at you, I find it hard to believe that there can be a Sardar as serious looking as yourself !)

Gurpal defends his honor with a comeback

 Nahin Sir, Aisi baat nahin hain, Main bhi apne kisam ki comedy karta aaya hun. (That’s not really true Sir, I have been known to do comedy on my own as well..)

which is immediately deflated by Siddhu (Slamming the table yet again):

Yeh Bataa – Who Wahiyaat idea – tha kiska !  (Yes I remember – if you are referring to that TV Show with hidden cameras, just tell me one thing – Whose terrible (vahiyaa) idea WAS that damn show?)

There is no equivalent to the word ‘vahiyaat’ in the English language…The word means ‘crude’ but is the crudest sounding word in itself. As the interview progresses, Gurpal asks Siddhu a host of serious questions including ‘What are your accomplishments as a a politician?’ Siddhu, true to form, responds to these serious questions with ‘self-indulgent’ evasive jokes, never quite addressing the question at hand.

Siddhu continues evading every question by answering in verse, aphorisms, platitudes, jokes – anything but the real answer to the question. The interviewer, while obviously getting more and more frustrated by the lack of straight answers, tries to keep the interview on track – and even tries to find ‘hidden’ meanings in the nonsensical replies. Just when Gurpal thinks he has grasped the thread of Siddhu’s thought, Siddhu deals him another verbal slap to knock him off track. When Gurpal tries to offer his understanding of what (he believes) Siddhu is saying, Siddhu disagrees and proceeds to directly insult his intelligence. He offers Gurpal these words of wisdom Just looking intelligent (or nodding intelligently) does not make one intelligent – at which Gurpal winces some more.

Eventually, Siddhu notices the growing frustration of his interviewer – and offers his (unsolicited) explanation of why Gurpal is getting visibly upset. He feels Gurpal’s hands, surmises that they are getting ‘cold’ – in much the same manner that Arjuna got cold hands during the Mahabharatha. Still holding his hand and ignoring all his protests, Siddhu offers Gurpal (what he considers) Lord Krishna’s antidote to getting cold feet. Feelings gayee tel lene – tu yudh kar . Yehi Gita ka Gyan Hai (To hell with feelings, just make war dammit)!. (Again ‘Tel Lene’, is one of those phrases that loses meaning in translation). Thus, the Bhagavad Gita, a mighty tome of 700 verses, filled with wisdom of the ages, is summarized in one, table-slapping sentence by Siddhu.

A personality like Siddhu comes once in a lifetime. In the hands of a talented impersonator like Shekhar Suman, the idiosyncrasies are highlighted even more. Gurpal, by providing a straight-faced, sober backdrop to the entire proceedings, accentuates the humor even more. I don’t know about you, but I still get a laugh everytime I watch this episode of Tedhi Baat.

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