A broken marriage behind him notwithstanding, Bhajan samrat Anup Jalota’s spotless reputation has suffered a setback with the scandal involving model, Jasleen Matharu in the Bigg Boss 12 house. This week Jasleen has been evicted from the Bigg Boss house. She now claims that her much-flaunted relationship inside the Bigg Boss house was a prank.
Anup, who has steadily claimed Jasleen was his student, shrugs, “When I came out of Bigg Boss, I very clearly said the so-called relationship was a publicity stunt. Now, Jasleen wants to call it a prank. If this is her idea of fun, then she should have gone to Bigg Boss with Mika, not me.”
Not that Jalota is complaining. “She benefited from our association on Bigg Boss. I benefited from going to Bigg Boss. Today, youngsters who didn’t know my work are singing ‘Aisi Laagi Lagan’. I also lost weight, slept 8-9 hours every night and relaxed more than I remember doing. So Bigg Boss was a paid holiday for me. Now, I am back to the grind. Last night, I came home at 3 am after Shatrughan Sinha’s birthday party. It’s 7 am now. And I’ve to catch a flight. So I am back living my hectic life. But, no complaints.”
Anup Jalota would like his fans to put the ‘Jasleen’ episode behind them. “I am trying to forget the whole episode. When I was out of Bigg Boss, the first question that my mother asked me was who was Jasleen and what was going on between her and I in Bigg Boss. I told her we were enacting a play. It is very difficult to explain to someone of my mother’s generation that nowadays any publicity is good publicity. I just want to put the episode behind me. Reputations are made and unmade at the drop of a hat these days. Those who know me through my work would not let this episode colour their respect for me.”
In hindsight, Jalota feels he should not have allowed the charade of a relationship to go on for so long. “When I was evicted from Bigg Boss, I told host Salman Khan that Jasleen was my shishya. She touched my feet in his presence. But I guess, she wanted to stay in Bigg Boss for a few weeks more. So she continued to pretend we were in a relationship. It was wrong. But I can’t hold it against her. She had to do what she had to do to get noticed.”