His claim to fame came recently with a controversial rape scene in
Rajeev Paul on his new role...in conversation with
Buzz is that you are campaigning for a political party up north.
(Laughs) How do you know that? It’s true, though I don’t wish to name the party.
Neta banne ka irada hai kya?
, my paternal uncle was the mayor of Ajmer. I was always interested in politics but my mum and wife (Delnaz) weren’t keen. This time, I convinced them to let me campaign. Only 30-40 per cent in our country exercise their right to franchise...under pressure or because they are bribed with money or freebies. The remaining 60-70 per don’t because they are educated and can’t be swayed. I’m out to convince this group to get out and vote. It will help me because, after five years, I plan to contest the Assembly elections.
What triggered off the decision?
It was the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai. I realised that it was time for people from different fields to come together and do something instead of just sitting on the fence and blaming ministers.
You have a party in mind?
Not yet, but an independent candidate doesn’t stand a chance in our country. In the last elections, out of 2000 independents, only five made it to Parliament. I don’t want that to happen to me. So, whether I agree with their agendas or not, I will join one party for sure.
Does that mean adieu to acting?
Why should I quit? There are so many actors in Parliament holding offices and they haven’t stopped acting.. whether it’s Dharamji (Dharmendra) or Jaya Bachchan.
You’re supposedly entering Mere Ghar Aayi Ek Nanhi Pari as Madan Chawla?
Correct. A child artiste is playing Madan presently. But there will be a generation leap and I’ll enter as Madan returning from my honeymoon. I have a younger sister Rakhi and after she was born, my mum was always singing, Mere ghar aayi ek nanhi pari. The title was an instant hook.
This will be your first show in almost a year.. nervous?
(Laughs) Do I look it? I’ve been acting for so long. I didn’t accept any offers in almost a year because if the show was okay, the role was a no-no. So, I opted for theatre instead. My play with Lilette Dubey, Wedding Album, has had 75 houseful shows across the country. But TV is where I belong.
Nach Baliyeyou haven’t done any other dance reality show.. though your wife and brother-in-law Bhaktiyar have.
(Laughs) Please, I can’t dance to save my life!
Maine kaan pakde hai, nahin, nahin, aur kabhi nahin
. When I go for shows, I warn the audience that I can’t dance. But they still clap. It has a lot to do with the kind of actor you are. Dharamji and Anil Kapoor are non-dancers too but the crowds go crazy when they do their signature steps on stage.
What is Delnaz upto these days?
She’s doing Yes Boss on Sab TV. And she has six movie releases this year. There’s plenty to keep her busy.
You’ve been married a long time..
(Interrupts with a laugh) I was married before I was born. I entered the world on June 5 and tied the knot on June 4. Hosh sambhalne se pehle hi shaadi ho gayi. My marriage is made in heaven. Delnaz understands my mum better than me.. and I bond better with my in-laws than she does. As for our relationship, sometimes we don’t need words to express ourselves.. we speak through our eyes.
What about a baby now?
(Laughs) Let us grow up first. Seriously, we’re planning to start a family soon. I used to think I’ll have a baby once I have Rs 5 lakh in the bank.. then it was a house. Now, I want to be a dad!