His love for adventure made him participate in MTV Roadies even when he was all set to join the Army. However, Rannvijay Singh had no idea that he would end up winning the show and then hosting it too! In fact, he went on to become one of the most popular hosts and presenters on television besides acting in films too! And, Rannvijay for sure has no regrets as he believes he has lived life like a game, getting better after each match!
Adventure and sports continue to be an integral part of his life even today, basketball being his passion. He is also the brand ambassador of National Basketball Association and is currently busy travelling to different cities across the country to promote NBA jam among the youth. He was recently in Bhubaneswar when MCL caught up with him during a NBA jam at XIMB campus. Excerpts from an interview
How different is Bhubaneswar from other cities?
I am in love with the greenery and cleanliness of the city. The cute part of the city is you get a human touch at every traffic signal with cops helping you out and giving you the directions, which is very rare in major Indian cities. I am sure kids of those cities would never see this thing unless they come here.
What was your first impression when you met people here in the city?
People here are sportive and loaded with energy. I have visited many places but the welcome I received here was more than what I expected. People here are very humble which inspired me. They are very cordial and also willing to take to new concepts.
What is your tour all about? Shed some light on NBA Jam.
I am very happy being associated with NBA. It is promoting sports like basketball at grassroots level. Earlier such tournaments were not happening in the country. Considered more fashionable today, basketball as a game is growing in India and NBA Jam is like a caterpillar on it.
Do you see any future of basketball in India?
Earlier people used to be skeptical of the game but now it’s changed. I have been playing basketball and now I am seeing changes in the mindset of many parents. Players like Satnam are making it happen and people are looking forward to it. It’s a great time for basketball in India. I am also amazed to know that last year NBA Jam had taken place in 16 cities and this year, it is 24. Is not that positive?
How are you expecting the government to contribute?
I just do not have any expectation as such. There are organisations working for creating better infrastructure for sports. NBA is closely associated with BFA who is supporting us in terms of infrastructure, venue and other related things as and when desired. My only concern is I want people to love basketball, more than just a sport!
Do you think the youth in our country are not too involved in sports?
You know what, we are the biggest youth in the world and we are also the most unproductive and unfit youth. Everybody is busy with social media, mobiles and gadgets. On a given Sunday, most people like to stay back at home, eat and sleep. In a way we are going towards nothing and surprisingly at the age of 30, people are suffering from heart attack, diabetes, joint issues and much more. This huge chunk of youth will be the decision makers of the country in the next 15 years and they are being wasted today.
Why did you choose basketball among other sports?
I must say parents must encourage their kids to take up sports like kabbadi, tennis, badminton, wrestling, basketball and so on. Basketball is not just sports; it’s more of a dance. You jump and play with your steps. Unlike other sports, it’s not time consuming either. I am quite happy B-schools and IITs are also encouraging the game.
What fitness tips would you like to give to our readers?
Eat well, sleep well, be conscious of your intake, be active and have better choices in life, eat a balanced diet and avoid smoking.
You chose Roadies over Army. Why so?
I was always fascinated with bikes and adventure. And that’s how I ended up in Roadies as I wanted to win the bike Karizma! Once television happened, there has been no looking back even though the last four generations in my family have been into Army.