After a successful four-year stint as Nahar Singh on Saat Phere, Sharad Kelkar completely dissappeared from the small screen. But having landed himself two big shows — Pati Patni Aur Woh and Bairi Piya — seems like his dry spell is over. Over to the actor who explains his absence from the scene.
Sharad, out of sight is out of mind...
I agree it is. But I didn’t have a choice. I had to impose the break on myself because I had undergone a knee surgery. That required at least four months of rest. I’ve only been working again for the last month or so. Before that, I had been working very hard for over four years. I needed some time off. I wanted to stay home and spend time with Kirti and my family. These breaks are a must. Otherwise, it’s very easy to get burnt out. Agreed. But you were seen visiting the sets of Saat Phere after you quit the show.
I was missing my colleagues and the sets. I couldn’t believe it was over. So, I would drop by, just to meet them and cheer them up.
Was your break worth it?
Yeah, because I’m back with two shows on prime time. In Pati Patni Aur Woh I’m the sutradhar and Bairi Piya is a daily. That’s a cool comeback I guess.
Bairi Piya is your second innings with Ekta Kapoor. Weren’t you anxious?
I was because the last time I worked in one of her shows, I didn’t perform quite well. I didn’t live up to the expectations that she had from me. I could almost be termed a failure. This time, I’m wiser to take on the work better.
You play a zamindaar in the show. Isn’t that a 1960’s concept?
Though zamindaari ended decades ago, it still exists in the country. Farmer reforms came about but the farmers didn’t utilise them properly. So even today, despite having loan facilities from banks at their disposal, they choose to approach the village moneylenders and zamindaars, who in turn loot and exploit them. But when they do that, it’s all very legal because they have every detail of their transactions in black and white.
Did you watch old Hindi films to prepare for your zamindaar act?
(Laughs) No, no. I didn’t have to do that. The script was quite clear. My character has grey shades. I was fed up of being the nice man. Now, I’m going to be a more real-life man, who has his own temptations and is flawed.
Did you read up on the farmer suicides in Vidarbha?
Of course, I read loads on that. Thanks to the media, no part of the country remains in the dark. The Vidarbha suicides were too prominent in the headlines to be missed. Today, I value every grain of food in my house. We take food for granted but the people, who grow that food for us, can’t have it. It’s so unfortunate.