Our very own, Mr Rajkumar alias Rajkumar Thakuria has gone national or you can say international. After giving many hits in Assamese language, his new Hindi song “Diwani tu Diwani” and English song “You are a doctor, I am a driver” has put him on the global map.
The song has received mixed responses amongst the audiences. It has also led to major trolling on social media platforms and recently by famous Youtuber “Carryminati”. Audio clips have been circulated on Whatsapp where people have disgracefully abused him over the phone.
About: With the internet of things, it is Mr Rajkumar, who brought the culture of being a Youtuber in Assam. He should be credited as a pioneer, which paved the way for a generation to become successful Youtubers.
What makes him different from the likes of Dhinchak Puja and Omprakash? Well, the sheer level of dedication and years of creating content with consistency. He is not a one song wonder, period.
Theme: The song “You are a doctor, I am driver. We fell in love with each other” talks about a love story between a driver and a doctor. The driver is at first reluctant because of his class consciousness. However, the doctor lady is quite open about her feelings and is not ashamed of expressing it openly. “Don’t say that”, she even confronts her friend when her friend calls him “a driver” in a mocking tone. The song explores the concept ‘dignity of labour’ and how love transcends the class barriers prevalent in the society.
Legendary artist, Dr Bhupen Hazarika once wrote a song about “Autorickshaws” and the dignity of labour. This song is thematically similar to that in certain aspects. (Not a stupid, to compare them together. Just a thematic comparison of both the songs). At a time, when unemployed youth is shifting to drive Ola and Uber in Assam, this song provides much respite to normalise the situation, which in many ways is beautiful.
Lyrics: Mr Rajkumar has been mocked for romancing openly in films and music videos. He has also been trolled by some “as a paedophile”. His overtly romantical and flirtatious lyrics include “Naam tumahara kiya, najanu main”. Although it is flimsical, the song normalises love as a public affair and it is openly expressing those emotions in a public platform. At a time when the country has become so uptight with ‘romance and the idea of love’ with events like the “anti-Romeo” squad in Uttar Pradesh and our local Assamese media trying to TV shame couples, Mr Rajkumar is the pop hero we all need.
The lyrics of his song “Agar main chand hota toh, tumhare liye chandni phelata” keeps nature and romanticism together. This is an old school style of writing — a reactionary response against the scientific rationalisation of nature — not found in contemporary lyrics. What is wrong in that?
Music: Okay, the music is also criticised by many. We all know Zubeen and Papon have taken Assamese music to a new level. But, during the last festive Bihu season, we also saw how in the name of rap music, hacks like Kusum Kailash and his contemporaries’ destroyed Assamese music and the rap genre as a whole. Mr Rajkumar’s music might be a bit redundant but it is honest. It doesn’t try to mimic any popular genre to sound cool. It is also catchy. Try listening to “Jak jak Gavoru, Bihu Nase” or “Dream Girl” to get a hold of his avand-garde style.
Trash genre: As reported by The Independent, academics have delved into the Thrash genre with the journal Poetics publishing a study entitled: ‘Enjoying trash films: Underlying features, viewing stances, and experiential response dimensions’.
“At first glance, it seems paradoxical that someone should deliberately watch badly made, embarrassing and sometimes even disturbing films, and take pleasure in them,” writes Keyvan Sarkhosh, a postdoctoral fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics.
The research finds that it is mostly film buffs who watch trash films as very often their enjoyment comes down to analyses of production values, dialogue, and plot structure. Ironic viewing is actually understanding the cinematic flaws of the movie but still deriving pleasure out of it. It also suggests that people with a high intelligence like such type of movies.
What the carryminati kid fails to understand, is that Mr Rajkumar’s movies should be looked through the prism of “Ironic Vewing”. The joke is on you if you try to be critical of his movies and songs.
Unifying diaspora: Mr Rajkumar is a big hit among the Assamese diaspora outside Assam and even outside India. People living in Delhi, Bangalore and other big cities often play his movies for sure fun and a few laughs. He receives calls and messages from such fans in good humour. They see him as a unifier of their dear homeland and something which they can talk about, apart from Assam floods. His music also blends well after you have hit the fermented grape juice.
Lastly, Rajkumar Thakuria reportedly resigned from his job just to devote his time in films. He needs better acceptance and polite mockery. Not abuses and insults.
PS – YouTube links of songs mentioned in the post are all embedded in the words. Do listen to them, if you have not yet.