No point in cashing in on the Modi name: Paresh Rawal

BJP candidate from Ahmedabad East Paresh Rawal is seen during an election rally

Over the years, Paresh Rawal has played many roles in Bollywood. And now, the actor is all set to don a new avatar in real life, after his election victory from Ahmedabad East. In this chat, he talks about his win, playing Narendra Modi in a new film, and more.

How has life changed post May 16 (counting day)?
It hasn’t changed, really (smiles). But of course, thodi zimmedariyaan badh gayi hai (some responsibilities have increased). My workload has also increased.

How will you manage your film career, as well as the Lok Sabha responsibilities?
All that will be planned appropriately. You are required in the Lok Sabha for about 120 days. The rest of the time I can do what I want. As long as I keep getting good scripts, I will do them.

Do people from your constituency expect a lot from you?
Expectations have gone up overall in the country. That’s because you have expectations from those who deliver, and since Mr Modi has delivered (in the past), expectations will be high.

Are you playing Modi in an  upcoming biopic?
Yes, that film is definitely on. Right now, the third draft of the script is being fine-tuned. But we will do the film only if the script works out well. There’s no point in cashing in on his popularity and the (Modi) name.

But we hear Victor Banerjee has bagged that part now.
Anyone can play the role, but I am doing that film.

Have you spoken to Modi about the movie?
Yes, I have. A long time ago, I asked him about it, and he said, ‘Yeah, okay. Go ahead.’ Last year, I spoke to him twice — first around February-March and then again in June-July. He has no reservations and just said, ‘Karo’ (do it).

Shashi Tharoor tweeted that he hopes “there will be no HeraPheri or OMyGod (sic)” in your new role as a politician.
Shashi Tharoor is a highly educated fellow (smiles). I don’t think he will ever tweet something like that. I am not aware of it. Normally, I don’t go through such things (on Twitter). I don’t think he has written that because ye alfaz unke nahi ho sakte (these words can’t be his). These things don’t affect me at all.

Unlike other celeb candidates, you didn’t have many film stars campaigning for you.
Suniel Shetty had come all the way, but I didn’t invite anyone specially (to campaign for me). I know that if I had invited anyone, they would have come. I am really thankful to Suniel. But I did get a lot of congratulatory messages (from the industry).


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