Only one Bangladeshi - Tawfiq Elahi Ansari - will be competing for the winner's trophy in the grand finale episode of popular standup comedy-based reality show Mirakkel Akkel Challenger on Indian TV channel Zee Bangla after two other contestants failed to join the show.
Originally three contestants - Abidul Islam Rimon, Tawfiq and Afnan Ahmed Rashed - were selected for the final round of season 10, but but both Rimon and Rashed failed to reach India due to the ongoing lockdown and closure of the Bangladesh-India border.
The government closed the border with India after the deadly coronavirus variant that has been ravaging the neighbouring country was found in Bangladesh on May 8. This Indian variant is considered dangerous because of its clinical aspects.
Rashed, a student of Jagannath University and Mirakkel finalist, said, "I had to come back during the break in shooting schedules for some personal reasons and got stuck in the middle of the lockdown as flights with India got cancelled. Zee Bangla authorities tried a lot to help but the situation remained unfavorable for me to return to India."
"However, I have been recognised as a finalist of the show for which I am earnestly grateful to the audiences and everyone involved with the show."
"I will miss the trophy the most, which could be ours this year," he lamented.
Another finalist Rimon said, "It was my dream to participate in Mirakkel, which has come true. Although I am a bit sad for not being able to participate in the finale, I consider myself to be extremely fortunate for the opportunity that I got to take part in the competition and learn a lot from there."
Rashed and Rimon might not be participating directly in the programme on Sunday but their fans will still be able to see a glimpse of them in the final episode. The two contestants have sent a recorded video clip from Bangladesh expressing gratitude to their fans and others involved in the show.
The grand finale episode of MirakkelAkkel Challenger Season - 10 will be broadcasted at 8.30 pm on 23 May. The popular show is hosted by Mir Afsar Ali and has a huge fan following all over India and Bangladesh.