Rajesh Khera, popular for his role as gay designer Maddy in TV show Jassi Jaisi Koi Nahi, says actors live on the edge because of uncertainties in their career and the feeling is scary.
"As an actor we live on the edge. We are not sure of our next move. If one serial gets over, we don't know when we will get our next project. So you are only earning for that period of time," Rajesh told IANS.
"All I can say is I have survived somehow. A lot of people have not survived. The industry is all about new concepts and new faces especially in the television sector. All new television soaps have new faces. Where do people like us go? This means life for an actor is limited, for four or five years only, unless you are Ram Kapoor or Ronit Roy, who for some reason have had an extension. It's very scary," he added.
He came to Mumbai from Pune in 1993. After an initial struggle, he was seen in serials like Tara, Swabhimaan, Raahein, Raahat, Ithihaas and Saaya.
"Honestly, I can't relate to today's programming and all these soaps. I sometimes wonder 'Rajesh where do you fit into it...I don't fit into that at all'. No doubt some of the characters are very interesting and strong, masses are watching it, channels are getting TRPs and they are getting money.
"I guess I don't represent true mass so I really cannot voice an opinion and can only speak for myself. I feel 25 percent of the television content is good, while 75 percent is rubbish," said Rajesh.
Apart from serials, Rajesh made his journey into films and featured in Hazaar Chaurasi Ki Maa, Josh, Taal, Tum Bin and Samay.
He feels that herd mentality is quite common among the makers of soaps and serials. "If one comes with regional concept, others also come with similar shows. If one person shows saas-bahu, others follow the suit. I don't like this culture. But then it's all for the masses and their opinion works. I feel they are not open or mature enough to accept new concepts," he added.
The actor is upbeat about his first ever stint in Star Plus' adventure reality show Survivor India and says it has made him a richer person from within. The show has 11 celebrities and 11 commoners competing with each other for survival on an isolated Caramoan Island in the Philippines.
"I have always prayed for rich experiences in life and Survivor India is one of them. There's so much to learn out of it. I have come out with huge respect for basic resources as well as life and has at the same time grown as a person. I have come back as a richer person. I love the new energy in my life and feel more brighter," he said.
Rajesh says he has also discovered a lot about himself during the show, something which he wasn't aware of. "I am a very muhfat insaan (frank person). I thought it is a good aspect in me. But I realised you can be honest, but not brutally honest... you need to involve some kind of diplomacy and I failed to incorporate that diplomacy. This is how I functioned in my life and that got me very poor marks in the show.
"I am also very gullible as a person and one can take me for a ride and that's what also happened in the show. I have learnt not to be very gullible and I don't go on face values," he added.