Raju Srivastava's Career, Through The Years

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Kanpur-born stand-up comic Raju Srivastava, who was battling heart complications, passed away this Wednesday at the age of 58.With millions of followers across a storied career, we took a moment to examine the late comic's interesting rise to fame.

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Early YearsBorn in Kanpur in 1963 to poet Ramesh Shrivastava AKA 'Balai Kaka', it was his father who introduced the young comic to mimicry — he would start by copying dialogues from popular Amitabh Bachchan films at the time.

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1980s BollywoodSrivastava started his career with small Bollywood roles, picking up appearances in Baazigar and Bombay to Goa. One of his earliest big-name projects was the Govinda starrer Aamdani Atthanni Kharcha Rupaiya, where he played an early comedic role.

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Rise Through TelevisionArguably, Srivastava's biggest legacy began in 2005, when he became a household name with The Great Indian Laughter Challenge — becoming its pilot season runner-up.

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National FameAfter his 2005 TV debut, Srivastava's fame continued to grow. He quickly developed a devoted following for his relatively clean, innuendo-free humour, and was a regular fixture in award shows and events well into the 2010s.Many of his performances took place alongside his fellow Laughter Challenge alumni, Kapil Sharma.

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Entering PoliticsAfter a long series of appearances on reality TV, Srivastava contested with the Samajwadi Party from Kanpur for the 2014 Lok Sabha election. This partnership was short lived, as the comedian quickly joined forces with the BJP, campaining alongside its candidates.

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