Fittest will survive

Fittest will survive

New show

Fittest will survive

Reality shows are not just about fun and entertainment. UTV Bindaas with its show D3 Commando Force proves just that. This new show will be the first step for aspiring young civilians to realise their dream of donning the cap of an Army commando. If the makers of this show are anything to by, Commando Force: Dadagiri Against Terrorism will convert civilians to commandos and help the nation fight terror. The show attempts to replicate the environment and arduous training sessions that go into making a real life Army commando; finding out whether the contestant ‘has it in him’ to become one.

To make the show closer to reality, UTV has partnered with ex-Army commando — Capt Albert Louis, Capt Kshitij Sharma and Capt Dharamveer Singh. All of them have spent substantial amount of time in the Army and are highly decorated officers. Their primary objective will be to train 14 young Indians and try to create commandos from them.
The makers of this show have even created a state-of-the-art commando training centre at Kolwel near Goa where the contestants will undergo commando training including jungle survival tactics, water landings, night navigations, bootcamp drills, and fitness and weapon training. And, in line with the Darwinian thought process, this too will follow the policy of survival of the fittest. 

The 14 contestants have been shortlisted after grueling audition rounds in Delhi, Lucknow and Mumbai, which attracted 6500 participants. Interestingly enough, the broadcasters are giving a nationalism flavour to the entire show to prove that this is different from the typical talent hunt shows that you see on television these days. Says Nikhil Gandhi, Business Head, UTV Bindass, “D3 Commando Force is our answer to the rampant acts of terror in our nation. Setting off with an objective to educate the torch bearer’s of tomorrow, D3 Commando Force is dedicated to impart knowledge on being socially responsible, fearless and intrepid in today’s times. Joining hands with the Indian Army, we take this campaign against terrorism to an-all-new-level and hope to create a new breed of young, confident and capable citizens who will be armed to fight this war on terror.”

Apparently, this the first reality show on Indian television to use real weapons, tactics and discipline of military units. Explains Vivaan Bhatena, co-host of the show, “This is going to be a completely different show where real life commandos will train civilians. These civilians will undergo commando training like they do at the Indian Army. The show will not be just about gags and bad words but missions, adventures and some real tough training.”

How are the contestants reacting to the grueling schedule? Says Captain Louis, former Para Commando, “They are very serious. After the initial training, we spent time with each person to find out their reasons for coming in this show.  It is akin to a real military camp and the contestants are going through very difficult physical tests. We are trying to make them physically and mentally fit like a true commando.” Interestingly, there are equal number of boys and girls on the show. The tests and challenges they undergo are the same.

But what happens to the people who complete the training successfully? Will they be taken in the Indian Army? Of course, not. However, there does not seem to be much clarity on the rewarding mechanism apart from the obvious cash benefits. Shalini Sheth, Programming Head, UTV Bindass tries to explain the situation by saying, “We take pride to be the pioneers in conceptualising a reality show on terrorism. We want to make the participants empathise on the pride that flows through their veins; the channel urges them to revisit the defence forces as a possible career option.”

The winners will of course get prize money, but whether they will get a preference over others while applying in the Indian Army is not known. The makers feel that through such programmes they will be able to make a difference where it matters most — changing the mindset of today’s youth. The spirit of nationalism and the keenness to join the army will increase manifold after seeing this on national television.

Captain Louis adds, “Discussions are still on with the Indian Army on how we can reward the winners of this show. Perhaps they will be allowed to spend time on a front for few days or meet high ranking officials. There will be definitely be a lot more than the cash rewards.” One does hope so!

Watch ‘D3 Commando Force’ on UTV Bindass every Saturday at 7 pm .