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Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs: Udit Narayan, Kumar Sanu opt out, Himesh Reshammiya, Javed Ali step in

Written by Sana Farzeen
| Mumbai |

Published: July 7, 2020 9:46:22 pm

Himesh Reshammiya and Javed Ali will join Alka Yagnik as the judges of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs. (Photo: PR Handout)

As television shows accept the new normal and work towards churning out fresh content, Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs will see a major change on the judge’s panel. Yesteryear star singers Udit Narayan and Kumar Sanu have opted out of the singing reality show. Instead, Himesh Reshammiya and Javed Ali will come on board, joining Alka Yagnik on the judges’ panel.

While one would assume that the development is due to the coronavirus scare, sources share the singers had prior commitments to fulfill, and had to thus discontinue their association.

“As Maharashtra was battling with coronavirus, the show was abruptly brought to a halt in March. If not, the season would have seen its finale now. Since the schedule went for a toss, Udit and Kumar ji informed the makers that they will not be able to continue any further. Both Himesh and Javed have had a long association with Sa Re Ga Ma Pa, and they instantly said yes when approached,” shared a source with indianexpress.com.

This is the eighth season of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs, and the show kickstarted its journey on February 29. Hosted by Maniesh Paul, 15 contestants were chosen from all over the country to compete for the trophy. Apart from the three judges, the reality show also consists of a grand jury comprising of 30 people from the music industry. Their average scores are also added to a contestants final marks after performances. The team is set to resume shoots from July 10.

On joining the show, Himesh Reshammiya in a statement shared that its homecoming for him, given he has been associated with the channel for over two decades. He said, “I am looking forward to a fresh start with the current season and hope we receive a tremendous response. We have an array of exceptionally talented young singers from across the country who have proven themselves to be great performers with their incredible passion and skill for music, so am sure this season will see some fantastic acts.”

With the show having children as contestants, the musician assured that their safety is of utmost importance to the team. They have been following a comprehensive set of guidelines for the same.

“As a mentor, I would like to nurture their aspirations and dreams and hope to lay the groundwork for these kids that would help enhance their talent,” he concluded.

New episodes of Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs will air from July 18.

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