25 December 1963
21 September 2022
Also known as
Aayushmaan Srivastava, Antra Srivastav
Ramesh Chandra Srivastava also known as Balai Kaka
Raju Srivastava was born on 25 December 1963 (Wednesday) and died on 21 September 2022. His real name was Satya Prakash Srivastava, but he was known as Raju Srivastava. His stage name as a comedian was Gajodhar. He was also an actor and politician. He was an active member of the Bharatiya Janata Party. He was born in 1963 in Khidwai Nagar Kanpur city of Uttar Pradesh state. His father Ramesh Srivastava was a poet. As a child, Srivastava loved to imitate film stars including Amitabh Bachchan. He was born in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, and moved to Mumbai in the 1980s to work in the Hindi film industry. He acted in Baazigar, Bombay to Goa, Aamdani Athani Karcha Rupaiya etc. He participated in the comedy show The Great Indian Laughter Challenge and became the runner-up. He won the title of “The King of Comedy” in its spin-off show The Great Indian Laughter Challenge – Champions. He did many stand-up comedy live shows. On 21 September 2022, Raju Srivastava passed away at AIIMS, New Delhi, where he was undergoing treatment for 41 days after suffering a cardiac arrest while working out at a gym in Delhi. They married on 1 July 1993. His wife’s name is Shikha Srivastava, they have a son Ayushmann Srivastava (sitar player), and a daughter Antara Srivastava (film director).
She is dark complexioned, slim body is 5 feet 7 inches tall, and has black hair and black eyes.
His father’s name is Ramesh Chandra Srivastava also known as Balai Kaka, he was a poet and a government employee. Raju Srivastava’s mother’s name is Saraswati Srivastava, she was a housewife. Raju Srivastava has two siblings Deepu Srivastava, who is a coney, and a sister Sudha Srivastava.
He moved to Mumbai in the 1980s and began his career by doing small roles in Bollywood films, playing a role in Rajshri Production’s Maine Pyar Kiya. and other small roles in various films like Baazigar and Bombay to Goa. He worked as an actor and comedian in the Bollywood film Aamdani Athani Karcha Rupaiya.
In 2005, she ventured into stand-up comedy with the talent show The Great Indian Laughter Challenge and finished as the second runner-up. He then participated in its spin-off, The Great Indian Laughter Challenge – Champions, and won the title of “King of Comedy”. He became famous for this show. As of 2009, he had done over 2,800 live shows.
In 2009, in an interview, he said that obscenity in comedy shows is a concern for him. He believed that comedians should practice self-regulation. Srivastava participated in Bigg Boss Hindi Season 3, the Indian equivalent of the Big Brother franchise, and was voted out on 4 December 2009 after being in the house for more than two months. In 2010, Srivastava received threatening calls
Pakistan warned him not to joke on underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and Pakistan during his show.
In 2013, Raju along with his wife participated in Nach Baliye Season 6, a couple dance show on StarPlus. He has also appeared in Comedy Nights with Kapil
In 2016, he appeared in a Hindi reality television talent competition, Mazak Mazak Mein.
In 2019, participated in the comedy show Comedy Ka Maha Muqabla. He made his debut with Dekh Bhai Dekh (1994) and Tezaab (1988).
The Samajwadi Party (SP) had fielded Srivastava from the Kanpur Lok Sabha constituency for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. But on 11 March 2014, Srivastava returned the ticket saying that he was not getting enough support from the local units of the party. The SP was expecting him to step down as the contest for the seat became crucial. After his resignation, SP withdrew its candidature from Kanpur.
Within days of leaving SP, he joined Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on 19 March 2014, BJP did not give him a ticket for Lok Sabha 2014. He campaigned in support of BJP candidates in Lok Sabha and Assembly elections. In 2014, he was appointed. Advertisements for the campaign were recorded by the BJP-led central government as the central ambassador of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. In 2018, Srivastava revealed on social media that he would get a chance to contest as a BJP candidate for the Lok Sabha in the 2019 general election, however, this did not materialize.
In March 2019, he was appointed as the President of the Uttar Pradesh Film Development Council by the BJP-led government of Uttar Pradesh. He returned to the Samajwadi Party as he was not getting enough support from the local units of the ruling party.
Achievement And Awards
2016: Yash Bharti Award by Akhilesh Yadav
2016: Award at Gata Rahe Mera Dil- Ph.D. Excellence Awards & Musical Evenings
2017: Dada Sahab Phalke Excellence Award
2020: Award for one of the top 100 personalities in India
List Of Shows He Worked
- 1988- Tezaab
- 1989- Maine pyaar Kiya (truck cleaner)
- 1993- Bazigar (college student)
- 2001- Aamdani atthani khorcha rupaiya (Baba chin chin choo)
- 2002 waah! Tera kya Kehna (Banne khan’s assistant)
- 2003- Maine prem ki Diwani hoon (Shambhu, Sanjana’s servant)
- 2007-Big brother (Autorickshaw driver and Rizwan Ahmed), Bombay to Goa (Anthony Gonsalves)
- 2010- Bhavnaon ko samjho (Daya from Gaya)
- 2017-Toilet: Ek prem Katha
- 1994- Dekh Bhai Dekh (cameo)
- 1998-2005- Shaktimaan (Dhurandhar Singh)
- 2005- The great Indian laughter challenge (contestant)
- 2009- Big boss(contestant)
- 2007-2014- Comedy circus (various characters)
- 2008-2009-Raju hazier ho(himself)
- 2011- Comedy ka mama muqabla
- 2013-2014- Nach baliye (contestant)
- 2013-2016– Comedy nights with Kapil (various characters)
1. Threat calls from Pakistan
In 2010, Raju received threatening calls from Pakistan, in which the caller asked him to stop making fun of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim and Pakistan on his show. In 2021, he again received death threats from Pakistan, with the caller warning him that he and his family would be killed if he did not stop mocking Pakistan on his show. The caller also told him that Raju would face a situation like that of Hindu Samaj Party (HSP) president Kamlesh Tiwari, who was murdered at his home in Lucknow in 2019. Raju shared a video on Twitter in which he said,
I was very angry when India was attacked by Pakistan and China. My anger flows from comedy. I am being bullied. My condition will be like Kamlesh Tiwari of Lucknow. My children will be killed, but I will speak only about my country. I am working my way. I felt happy when the soldiers of my country conducted surgical strikes.”
Thereafter, he lodged an FIR in Maharashtra against the caller. He also asked Home Minister Amit Shah to initiate a probe against the caller.
2. Suing An Unidentified Person for Defamation
In 2017, Raju filed a police complaint against an unknown person at Oshiwara police station for defaming him by using his picture with disgraceful jokes about Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other members of the BJP which were circulated on social media.
3. Extortion By a Worker of Samajwadi Yuvjan Sabha
- In 2019, a man named Rahul, who claimed himself to be a worker of SP’s Yuvjan Sabha, demanded Rs. 10 lakhs after blackmailing Raju to expose a video in which Raju can be seen romancing women in his house in Lucknow. Raju sent an application against Rahul to Hazratganj DGP OP Singh, after which the accused was arrested.
4. Double standard of Raju
Raju was criticized a lot after he reprimanded the makers of the web series Tandav in 2021. In a video posted on social media, he said,
How dare you make fun of Hindu gods and goddesses? I dare you to make shows criticizing other religions. You will not be able to do this because you will be killed. Saif Ali Khan has been supporting this time and again because it is said that Hindus are good enough to forgive. But it is time for strict action. Merely deleting a scene is not enough, criminals should be punished.”
- Following his criticism, filmmaker Vinod Kapri posted an old video of Raju making fun of Lord Brahma.
- Raju Srivastava died on 21 September 2022 during treatment at AIIMS, New Delhi. He was admitted to AIIMS in August 2022, where he underwent angioplasty after suffering a heart attack while exercising on a treadmill at Delhi’s Cult Gym. Many celebrities and politicians came forward to check his health. Some of them include Defense Minister Rajnath Singh, Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
- According to several media reports, it was reported on 18 August 2022 that Raju was brain dead, but his manager cleared the rumors and said, there is nothing like that. He is unconscious. There was swelling in the veins of his brain. With some medications, he was unable to react. Then some injections were given due to which some nerves in his brain got swollen. The doctors are treating it.
Top 13 Interesting Facts About Raju Srivastava
Raju Srivastava served as the chairman of the Film Development Council, Uttar Pradesh.
Raju was very good at mimicry since childhood. He used to imitate his teachers in school for which he was scolded because his teachers said that it was an insult to him. Raju used to imitate his voice in front of his relatives after seeing his voice on the radio as there was no TV in his house.
In an interview, Raju said that when he started doing comedy, many of his relatives were not happy with his profession, and they often complained to his parents about his choice of work. In the interview, he further said, my relatives felt insulted by my comedy. They thought that children needed to read and not tell jokes in other people’s homes. They used to complain to my parents and think that my family would be insulted.
When he came to Mumbai in 1982, he worked as a driver to earn money. Later, he released his first audio jokes cassette ‘Hasna Mana Hai,’ which gained a lot of popularity.
When he was a youngster, he became a big fan of Amitabh Bachchan. He used to keep the same hairstyle as him and put up his posters in his room. In an interview, Raju said that people used to call him to their homes to entertain them during family functions.
In an interview, he talked about his character Gajodhar Bhaiya and said that Gajodhar was his barber when he was a child.
Raju was given the title of King of Comedy on The Great Indian Laughter Challenge show in 2005.
Raju appeared in about 500 episodes of Shaktimaan (TV Series). His role as Anthony Gonsalves in Journey Bombay to Goa: Laughter Unlimited became famous.
In an interview, Raju revealed his love story with his wife Shikha, and said that he waited for twelve years to get married to her. He met her in 1982 at his brother’s wedding in Fatehpur and fell in love at first sight. Although he decided to marry her, he couldn’t gather up the courage to confess his love to her. Later, he went to Mumbai to become a comedian. He struggled there for a few years and in the meanwhile, he used to send letters to Shikha to know if she got married to someone else or not. After a few years of hard work, he bought his own house in Mumbai and developed financial stability. Thereafter, he sent a marriage proposal to Shikha’s house and impressed her brothers after which their marriage was confirmed.
In 2016, he appeared in a TV Commercial for ‘PetSaffa.’
In 2019, he presented the proposal of making a film city in Varanasi to the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath. He told him that if there was a film city in Varanasi, the young artists would not have to go to Mumbai and the place would also become a tourist attraction. After his proposal, he was allotted a 106-acre plot in Varanasi to make the film city.
In August 2022, while exercising on the treadmill at the Cult gym in Delhi, he suffered a heart attack and was immediately rushed to AIIMS, Delhi. Later, he underwent an angioplasty after which he was shifted to the Intensive Care Unit. According to media sources, on 12 August 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called Raju’s wife to take his health updates.
- In 2019, a person named Rahul demanded Rs. 10 Lakh from Raju and blackmailed him into leaking the video of Raju romancing women in his house in Lucknow. Rahul claimed to be a worker of SP’s Yuvjan Sabha. Later, Raju sent an application to the DGP of Hazratganj, OP Singh after which Rahul was arrested.