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Remembering India’s Funny Man Jaspal Bhatti on His 64th Birth Anniversary

Before venturing into TV, Jaspal Bhatti was a cartoonist for The Tribune newspaper in Chandigarh.

Updated:March 4, 2019, 11:14 AM IST
Remembering India’s Funny Man Jaspal Bhatti on His 64th Birth Anniversary
Jaspal Bhatti. (Image: Instagram)
One of the most loved humorists and satirists of the 90s, Jaspal Bhatti was Doordarshan’s poster boy for clean comedy. Known for his iconic shows Ulta Pulta and Flop Show, Bhatti died in a road accident in the wee hours of October 25, 2012, while promoting his film Power Cut, which was scheduled for release the next day.

On his 64th birth anniversary, we remember one of India’s most loved funny men.

-Born on March 3, 1955, in Amritsar, Bhatti graduated from Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh, as an electrical engineer. In college, he was popular for his street plays. Before venturing into TV, he was a cartoonist for The Tribune newspaper in Chandigarh, where he began working in 1982 and eventually became famous for his column 'Oddly Speaking', which critiqued social evils.

-Counted among India's first stand-up comics, Bhatti’s television outing Flop Show changed TV's TRP game in the 90s. Each episode started with a lengthy skit and wrapped up with a parody. The credits of the show were unique too, where Bhatti poked fun at the world and himself by using credits like 'Misdirected by Jaspal Bhatti', 'Camera Jerks', 'Jarring Music' and 'Over Actors'.

-Flop Show’s actors, which also included Bhatti’s wife Savita and Vivek Shauq, became household names for their poker face acts. Catapulted to fame, Bhatti went on to write and direct two more shows—Full Tension and Thank You Jija Ji.

-He also founded India's first humour club which he called Nonsense Club. Through it, he and his team would perform street plays to highlight social evils.

-Bhatti forayed in movies in 1996 with Punjabi film Mahaul Theek Hai, which parodied the police. He went on to act in several Bollywood films, including Mausam (2011), Fanaa (2006), Kuch Naa Kaho (2003), Tujhe Meri Kasam (2003), Koi Mere Dil Se Poochhe (2002), Hamara Dil Aapke Paas Hai (2000), Kartoos (1999), Aa Ab Laut Chalen (1999) and Jaanam Samjha Karo (1999).

-Bhatti's son Jasraj was driving the car when it rammed into a tree near Punjab’s Shahkot at 2:30am on October 25, 2012. Power Cut’s heroine Surilie Gautam and film’s promoter Navneet Joshi were also in the car at the time.

-They were rushed to a private hospital in Jalandhar where Bhatti, who suffered serious head injuries, was declared brought dead. He was 57. Bhatti is survived by wife Savita, a son and daughter Raabiya.

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