This is year 2001, a dusty ground was full of local spectators at a Ganapati celebration in Suyog Nagar in Nagpur. Orchestra had just started spreading lovely music. Singers after singers were entertaining the audience with lovely songs of Mukesh. In the whole scene a young anchor hardly 18 – 19 years of age was holding the stage for the whole orchestra with poems, introductions, and catchy punches. His voice was distinctive, and very different from the tone of the orchestra. A seasoned , mature, sound with lots of modulation showed that it was distinctive.
That was my First attendance to Milind’s show with entire Cluster 3 team. Milind was then a part of Marketing & launch team of Navarashtra. We had gone to attend his show just to see what a common maharashtrian boy could do with a mike. And Milind surprised us very much on that Day. These were the days when Amin Sayani was the God of Radio
Those were the very early days of Milind’s life & career. What started as a hobby turned out to be a fulltime career for him. Not just him, but for numerous other aspirant Girls and boys who were trained by him and whom he inspired with his voice.
Milind took up anchoring to support his education. Hailing from a humble middle class background, where education was mandatory, milind’s interests were in creative pursuits, gardening, music and movies. Well the difference of opinion proved to be the motivation for him and he stepped out of his comfort zone to explore a world of his choice when RJ”ing at a radio station was still a decade ahead.
What Happened then? How did this young boy end up setting up own radio station chain?
Well this sounds like a movie theme, but its real life. Radio Mirchi was the first radio station of Nagpur and were auditioning at a local studio in Nagpur. When they finished with their auditions the Mirchi team casually discussed the list with the owner of studio. Who in turn informed them that the best voice of Nagpur was missing from the list, and Milind auditioned for Mirchi on that day.
Naturally got selected, but got a late night show called as “Purani Jeans’ about golden oldies. He continued with that show for quite some time and it was immensely popular with students who used to listen radio late night. Then came, the big opportunity with the morning show. Morning shows are primetime shows and can result in rejection if audience doesn’t like it.
Mornings with Radio Mirchi were changed forever at Nagpur with Milind on Air. Audience participation grew with each show. Number of caller’s everyday went in to hundreds. And a local Star was Born, RJ Milind. He was the best choice of anchor for all Birthdays, parties, and events. For once we had a Local celebrity in Nagpur.
The best thing about RJ Milind is his quest to learn and unlearn, which reflected through his shows. Movies, creative, and current affairs were his forte and he could weave stories for audience and keep them glued to their radio sets. There is an interesting fact about Milind, due to his stage background, Milind records or does his radio shows without a chair stand on his feet.
The next pathbreaking change came through My FM which offered him a better scope for creativity and remuneration. The creative challenge for a RJ is that they have to perform within a set timeframe, and topics are restricted, songs are restricted by channel. In simple words, if it’s raining then probably RJ cannot pick a rain song and play to set the mood, because the radio station policy doesn’t allow him to choose his songs.
RJ Milind could break this rule at My FM, and what happened after that is history. Songs selection changed at MY FM. Days, events coincided with Songs and people could relate to Radio stations in a better way. Path breaking attempts to deal with problems like Nagpurian’s urinating in public were addressed on his show, another path breaking attempt was to air Dr Babasaheb Ambedkars thoughts on his birthday through his show, Rupee 1/- donation campaign, Traffic, Youth, everyday issues, city issues, responses by government, municipal, fire brigade, college principals, corporaters etc were all made My FM a very popular local radio station of Nagpur besides good music because RJ Milind spoke about them, with them every day.
Now came the moment of truth, careers like these don’t happen by Luck. Years of hardwork, Struggles go hand in hand with this. By this time awareness about being an RJ had grown and youngsters were seriously looking at this as a profession due to immense popular show and stability of RJ Milind. Which resulted in an Institute for RJ’ing , which later turned in to a creative free spirited learning center for applied arts like Music, Dance, Sound, Video. ‘Bird School of Arts” which has to its credit several young RJs, musicians, several jam sessions, events, Documentary production, creative writing, creative expression and everything about a good human being and a good artist.
On a personal level, the days of struggle chased him even harder. On one side when Milind was holding to earn his livelihood through Anchoring, rjing and as a sound artist, life treated him just like anyone else. Love marriage with his school sweet heart Sarika resulted in staying away from home for a couple of years. Brother shifted to Japan for a job, leaving all responsibilities on Milind. By brick by brick, one day at a time he build what a successful person would do. He would try more, struggle more, and do more.
Today, a decade is passed where RJ milind has enjoyed being the top Celebrity RJ of Nagpur. He has to his credit success of creating a niche for himself and paving a road for next generation of RJ’s. He is the Leader of new age business.
The radio orange Story:
Later in his career he admitted that he wanted to do something more. He even turned down a few lucrative anchoring assignments where shows were modified keeping him in mind. Those were the signs of next creative leap for Milind which resulted in Radio orange.
Abhijit realtors is a well known business house of nagpur and one day while discussing creative pursuits of life Both Milind and owner of Abhijit Realtors admitted to each other that now the time has come to do something bigger & better. Thus, Radio Orange was incubated.
Discussion to going on air was a different struggle. Bidding for stations was a process, Studio & equipments, setting up, Creative content, administration, staffing everything needed RJ Milind as a visionary leader with extraordinary skill sets.
If I ask you to set up a radio station then you would probably laugh at me. For the idea of radio station doesn’t fit the stereotype of existing entrepreneurship. Developing and working on such ideas need tremendous stress and vision with a firm action plan.
Milind could do it because he took a step towards it, he believed in his idea and today he is te only RJ in entire India to launch and set up his own radio company with 3 stations in 2 states. And series of more to come in recent future.
What is Milind as a person?
There are just 2 sides to Milind’s personality. First his family and second his profession. Friends and movies are an integral part of his both sides. Movies are his passion and meeting people is his profession. Loves riding bikes, prefers casual clothes, loves home food, and likes to live in style with discipline.
What does this success mean to Nagpur?
Milind’s achievements are exemplary. Absolutely fresh and benchmarked for success. Rs300/-per show to setting up a radio station is no ordinary struggle. Not for place like Nagpur. We look for opportunities, Motivation and inspiration in others stories. But technology has made it possible for us to write our own success stories right here from our homes. Unusual path and extraordinary leadership in Nagpur set by RJ Milind.
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