Mika Singh, Bollywood Playback Singer and Performer

Mika Singh, Bollywood Playback Singer and Performer

Asit Dixit and Umesh Patil |
February 19, 2019

“Humne kuch bola tha Kanwaljeet ko bhi ki iske alawa kisi aur ko bhi chahiye toh main do-chaar logon se baat kar loonga … lekin pehle ek baar apna ho jaaye (I had told Kanwaljeet that if you need help I can rope in some more people … but first let me start it).”

The younger brother of Daler Mehndi has carved a niche for himself as a singer both in Bollywood and in regional filmdoms, singing more than 100 songs in various languages. His range of singing includes not only regular Hindi film songs but also pop, Bhangra and rap genres. In his two-decade-long career, Mika Singh has cut about 20 albums many of which have been chart-busters, apart from acting in a couple of Punjabi films. With more than 40 lakh followers on Twitter, more than 50 lakh on Facebook and 10.70 lakh on Instagram, he has quite a staggering presence on social media.

In fact, it was his manager Kanwaljeet who facilitated our meeting with his boss Mika after we had discussed our objective with him in detail. We had also agreed to pay his boss Rs. 5 lakh per message per month, as demanded by him. We met the singer on the sidelines of reality show India Ke Mast Kalander, where Mika is one of the judges, at Cine Classic Studio at Bhayandar in Mumbai. Kanwaljeet has apparently briefed his boss on this assignment. So, what do you understand about the assignment, we ask the singer. Is there any confusion? “Nahi matlab BJP humein campaigning karni hai (No, what you mean is I have to do campaigning for the BJP),” the singer says. No, don’t use the word campaigning, we advise him. The singer promptly corrects himself to say, “Nahi acchi waali karni hai rapo rapo banaani hai (No, I have to promote it, make a good rapport).”

You see, you are not working as a BJP brand ambassador for this assignment, for if you act as one, people will not take you seriously. So, it has to be done in a discreet manner. You simply have to praise the BJP government for all its good work. Taking a cue, Mika begins to recount those schemes, “Jaise Beti Bachao ho gayaa …  ek inka yoga day ho gayaa … Swach Bharat ho gayaa (There is this Beti Bachao [Beti Parhao] scheme … they have a Yoda Day … there is Swach Bharat).” Looks like the singer keeps a tab on what the BJP government is doing or, maybe, has done a crash course on it after his manager has apprised him of what he is expected to do. We also add some more schemes to enhance his knowledge.

Apart from all these schemes, there is this issue of NRC in Assam on which opposition parties are cornering the BJP government. Why not make a small tweet on this issue, we tell him, in which you can say the government has taken the first step in right direction. Replies Mika, “Sahi baat … Main chahta hoon ki aap mujhe uska content bhej do main usko halka-fulka edit kar doonga (Correct … Send me the content which I will edit slightly).” That is right, we tell him. Yes, of course, we will provide you the content. You can repackage it in your own way. But you don’t have to work overtime all of a sudden. You can just make three-five posts a month. The number of messages can be anything between four and six a month. “Chaar best hain (Four is the best [number]),” suggests the singer.

But at the same time you have to bear it in mind that the general public should not perceive you as working for the BJP. “Nahi, nahi unko main waise bhi na jab bhi koi accha kaam hota hai main humesha kartaa hoon … wo jo  bhi karte hain. Zyadatar inki sarkaar chal rahi hai toh saare inke hee chalenge … maine tab bhi tweet kiya tha jab inhone Hindi boli thi USA jaake (No, no. Anyway whenever some good work is done there I always appreciate that … It is their government in most of the states, so naturally I will talk about what they do … I had tweeted when he spoke in Hindi while visiting the USA),” Mika informs us.

Hope it is now clear you have to promote the BJP using your social media account, we say. The singer responds with an emphatic “Done”. Now, giving an example we explain how he could be innovative while doing the job. Whenever you go for an outdoor shooting in countryside, we tell him, you can say the village did not have light for so many years. But you can see there is electricity thanks to the BJP government. You can also use a photograph for the purpose. “Samajh gaya main (I got it),” says Mika.

When you feel you can do better than the content we have provided you, you are always welcome. “Ji bilkul, bilkul (Yes, sure),” assures the singer. This activity will continue till the 2019 elections, we inform him. The singer asks, “Haan … ab ye shuru kab se karna hai humein (Yes … when I will have to start it).” From 15th of this month, we say. But before that you will receive an official mail from our company informing you about this meeting and seeking your confirmation. In your reply you have to simply say the meeting had taken place and you agree to do what was discussed. That is all. “Bilkul (Sure),” the singer says. After that you will be sent the contract to complete the formality, we tell him. Offering help, Mika says, “Humne kuch bola tha Kanwaljeet ko bhi ki iske alawa kisi aur ko bhi chahiye toh main do-chaar logon se baat kar loonga … lekin pehle ek baar apna ho jaaye (I had told Kanwaljeet that if you need help I can rope in some more people … but first let me start it).”

Coming to money matters, an essential part of negotiations, we tell the singer that his manager had quoted a rate for his fee. We have spoken to our higher officials and they are okay with it, we say. Hope it has come to your knowledge. “Haan, haan (Yes, yes),” Mika tells us. He even tells us with a gesture of his hand that we have agreed to pay him Rs. 5 lakh per message a month. “Almost itna (this much) per tweet,” he says.  We hope that issue of the cash part is also clear to you, we say. “Haan (Yes),” informs the singer. Since our company has to do some accounting, 10 percent of your fee will be paid in white, we say. The singer assures us, “Okay … ji ji ji … koi tension nahi hai baaki saara Kanwal kar lega aapke saath (Okay … yes, yes, yes … there is no tension … the rest Kanwal will discuss with you).” When we tell him this agenda has to be kept a secret, Mika assures us, “Don’t worry … bilkul (sure) … done.”

With this assurance, we wrap up our interview with the singer. Some weeks later, Kanwaljeet sent us two messages. In one message, he sought update on the proposed assignment and in the second he forwarded a tweet that his master had made condoling the demise of former Prime Minister and BJP leader Atal Behari Vajpayee. Both the tweet and the message are self-explanatory.

We had e-mailed a questionnaire to all these celebs to know what they would like to say on what we have revealed in our story. Click here to read the answers.

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