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HindustanTimes Sun,21 Sep 2014

Playing the phoenix

Navleen Kaur Lakhi, Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, February 05, 2014
First Published: 10:18 IST(5/2/2014) | Last Updated: 10:37 IST(5/2/2014)

If all you know about actor Amit Sadh is that he’s someone who ruled TV at one point, faced a miserable career failure and was in the middle of the ‘infamous’ break-up with Punjabi actress Neeru Bajwa, you have some catching up to do.

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After the success of his previous Bollywood flick, Kai Po Che, Amit now comes across as a person who has a fresh outlook on life, believes in spirituality and waits for karma to do its thing.

Though he gives us the liberty to talk about anything we please, we choose to commence with the reason for his Punjab visit, RunningShaadi.com. “I was born in Jammu and raised in Delhi, but I have a house in Panchkula, as my massi (mother’s sister) stays here. Aadha Punjabi hun, aadha Rajput. About Runningshaadi.com, I think I fell more in love with the director, Amit Roy, than the script; just got the right vibe from him,” says he.

Amit, who plays a Bihari character in the film, says, “I don’t believe in caricatures. When I did a Gujarati boy’s role in Kai Po Che, I made people believe I’m one. This film too is not about a Bihari guy. Bihari is not a language, it’s an attitude.”

If sources are to be believed, Amit rejected a lot of offers after the success of Kai Po Che. “It’s very stupid to come up with numbers. You don’t reject a film; a film chooses you. A lot of scripts came my way, but this is what I thought I should start with.”

About how life changed after Kai Po Che, he says, “As a person, I’m the same, but things around me have changed. I struggled for seven years; I had no money, no work, no friends. My best friend paid my rent for two years. My driver, Imran Bhai, who is like family, paid my rent for a few months.”

Despite being a superstar on TV, what went wrong? “I had done enough TV; I wanted to do films. Who knew it would take seven years! In between, I went to Lee Strasberg Acting School, New York, from 2009 to 2011. You see, in Hollywood, every star has been either on the streets or to rehabs. In India, once you are an actor, your life is supposed to be perfect. But, I’m an honest guy; I call a spade a spade. Meri zindagi me waat lagegi toh I will say lagi hai! Things got difficult for me because of people’s perception.”

“I remember visiting the Golden Temple once and crying my eyes out. Now, it all makes sense. Time is the greatest ruler. Therefore, everyone should stay humble and grounded,” he adds.

Since he is on an honest streak, we ask him if he’s still in touch with Neeru Bajwa. After a big smile, which turns into laughter, he says, “No, I’m not, but I will always be fond of her. I saw Jatt & Juliet and spoke to her. I don’t hate her; she doesn’t hate me. We have spent eight beautiful years together. Ho gaya yaar abh bas! She has moved on now, and is with someone else.”

Admitting that he is single, he clears the air about rumors of him dating costume designer Niharika Khan. “I roam around with so many girls, that doesn’t mean I’m dating everyone,” he says.

Calling himself spiritual, Amit says he is an avid believer of karma. “Time is the greatest ruler. I don’t have a PR, neither do I believe in having one. I believe when people want to read about me, things will happen.”

From the films Amit has recently signed, he shares the name of only one, saying, “I’m doing a couple of more movies. One of them is Aditya Dutt’s political thriller, 10 Janpath, which also stars Paresh Rawal, Aditi Rao Hydari and Konkona Sen Sharma.”

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