A celebrated British Author wrote in his award winning book ‘Night at the Circus’ that ‘The child’s laughter is pure until he first laughs at a clown’.It looked precise when we saw children laughing and hanging around a live short clown standing on his knees at Girgaon Chowpati in Mumbai.
Ravi Clown, 28, has a complete name but loves to be known and called as Clown as his last name. Ravi caught our site at the Chowpati when every child impatiently longed for him to get captured alongside their funny clown. Ravi is not much educated and always wanted to work in circus. His dream did come true however unfortunately Ravi lost his legs in an accident while performing in circus. Ravi was not a clown initially; he worked as a Trapeze operator however an accident while performing in a circus turned him handicapped for lifetime. “I always wanted to work in circus, and loved clowns but never got opportunity to be one in the group, and my destiny brought me here, I cannot work in circus now”. Ravi doesn’t like to witness any circus performances and avoids watching them online as well. “I start crying if I see the circus, I am not comfortable”. Ravi’s gigantic imaginative costumes and his colorful hair extensions bring him in every visitor’s eye. Surprisingly Ravi designs all his costumes and keeps himself updated with the trend of funny dresses across the world taking online support. Ravi isn’t sure about his education but he is assuring to educate his younger sister who is pursuing bachelors and learning typewriter. “My two sisters are married and I want my little sister to study and work in a bank, she is my responsibility and I am sure she will be independent.” Ravi’s extended family includes his younger brother and parents living in a small village of Uttar Pradesh. Along with Ravi his Uncle 40 also is a clown and performs at various places back in his hometown. Ravi lives near Chor Bazar in South Bombay and uses artificial legs to ride his small bicycle to the home at mid night where he shares the room with three more people. “I finish my work after midnight and clean my make up at the garden nearby, then I go home. How about food? I get food from the food stall owners here and sometime I go and eat outside, I pay 60 to 70 rupees for the food for one time”. When asked about his earning from being a clown he confirmed that about four to five hundred a day. Kids and parents showing the curiosity to see his costume and click selfie with him make the clown happy as his only intention is to make people around him happy and entertain them. “I want to make people happy and laugh, they feel good when they see me and laugh when I talk to them, it is very difficult to make people laugh these days”. Ravi speaks few words of English such as God Bless you and Have a nice Day which he has learnt from Bollywood movies. Sharing his pity to his capabilities he said “I get tired because I stand on my knees for 8 to 10 hours in the evening and they pain, I want to work for less hours and want to work in films”. Ravi every year goes to Lalbaug at the time of Ganpati to earn more however he feels humiliated there. “people laugh at me and make fun of my hair wig and cloths, I have been beaten also”. Apart from standing at the corner of a chaupati and getting clicked with the kids he shows magic, so he is a magician too and he dedicates this to his trainer who has recently passed away. Where the country is mulling over casteism and on religion prejudices this less educated clown does not believe in hailing from any cast and religion and hence he added Clown as his last name. “I have no cast and I don’t want to be known by my religion, my job is to make people laugh and entertain them and that’s all I believe”. Disclosing his personal front Ravi told that “I am divorced, everyone wants complete in everything and I am not so my wife left me, I do not have any love crush either”. Ravi is an entertainer and also a decorator. He goes for the kids parties at Halloween and children’s day parties, his costumes too have a tag of Halloween. However the clown does not know the story behind children’s day. Chaupatis and beaches are meant for relaxation and spending the time with loved one while experience food at the same time but sometimes the small part of these places are hardly noticed. The clowns and the magicians, the photographers and the toy sellers are the real people of these places who let people come into their zone and entertain them with zero expectations. People laugh at them, make fun of them, avoid them but their job never changes and never turns anyone down rather gives that happy bye to every visitor.