New Delhi: Popular comedienne Bharti Singh, who started her journey through the comedy show Great Indian Laughter Challenge, recently opened up about living in poverty and her difficult childhood days.
In a podcast with Neena Gupta, the comedienne shared that her father passed away when she was just two, and her siblings had to leave their studies and work in a blanket factory to earn money. She said in Hindi, “My focus has always been poverty. I was two years old when my father passed away. My brothers and sisters left their jobs. They used to work in a factory. They used to carry heavy blankets. They would stitch them night after night. Sometimes my mother would stitch dupattas. I still hate the smell of those blankets and the sound of the machine. I have seen enough poverty with my family and don’t want to see it anymore. If you do a background check, you will find that most comedians have a poor background.”
“I can’t tell you what poverty I have seen. If I used to see people throwing half-eaten apples, I would think that the person would get cursed for wasting food. I would even think of picking it up and slicing it in a way so that I could eat it. Never had eaten an entire apple,” she added.
She also described how somebody’s leftover or stale food was fresh food from them. Regarding her mother’s struggle, Bharti said, “I used to get depressed during festivals. We would do Lakshmi puja after my mom got the sweet box from work. I would stand near other kids bursting crackers so that others would think I burst them. When my mom would work at people’s homes, I used to sit near the door. She would clean toilets. While leaving, they would give her leftover food. Their stale food would become our fresh food.”
Bharti also thanked Sudesh Lehri and Kapil Sharma as they recognised her talent, and Kapil asked her to participate in a comedy show. She initially refused as she was camera conscious but then went for the audition and was selected.
“We didn’t have a phone but got a call at my neighbour’s home. I was asked to come to Mumbai. That was the first time I took a flight with my mother. I was even scared to take a trolley, thinking we might have to pay. But when we were about to land in Mumbai, I just felt like it was homecoming,” she said.