Ranbir Kapoor

Ranbir Kapoor in a still from “Barfi!”

MUMBAI — A 10-year-old deaf mute boy literally has found his voice after an appearance on a reality show — that too with Anurag Basu, the maker of the hit “Barfi!”, as one of its judges! What’s more, Harsh Dhara from Jalgaon won the hearts of not only the judges — Basu, Shilpa Shetty and Geeta Kapur — of Sony’s dance reality show “Super Dancer” during the audition rounds but also of the viewers.

A Mumbai publication reports that it was a “Barfi!” moment for Basu during the mega-auditions when the youngster performed to his film’s “Itti Si Hasi,” and, though he was eliminated soon after, the emotional filmmaker told Dhara that he would like him to meet his “Barfi!” hero someday. On Oct. 23, the boy got to meet Ranbir Kapoor in his vanity van and wowed him with his performance on another song, this time from “Lakshya.”

Dhara is a deaf mute, and, though his run on the show was short, the channel decided to sponsor his treatment. The boy has been given a hearing aid and can now hear almost 70 percent. And, in an episode to be aired this weekend (Oct. 29-30), viewers will see Dhara speak onstage for the first time when he returns to the show.  

The boy’s first attempts to speak were just muffled sounds, but the two women judges were choked with emotion. His dance teacher, Gaurav Nathani, recalled how the boy had come to him with his elder sister when he was just two.

“I decided to take up the challenge of teaching Harsh, and, since he couldn’t hear, I communicated with him through gestures. Now, he can hear quite well but will have to undergo speech therapy before he can respond to sounds properly. It’s a happy moment for us,” he told the newspaper.

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