Ace actor Anupam Kher, was busy in his home city Shimla, donning an all together different role, making the most out of his vacation in the cool climes.
A break from lights, camera, action it was all together a public affair, be it catching up with friends, strolling on The Mall and Ridge, paying a visit to the Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, meeting the Director General of Police (DGP) Sanjay Kundu at Police Head Quarters, visiting his Alma Mater DAV School Lakkar Bazaar and Army Headquarters and even flagging off a free ambulance service for senior citizens by a local NGO.
In an informal chat with media, replying to his political ambitions and the buzz that had been rife of his contesting last Assembly elections-2017 in Himachal, he said, “It was just a rumor. Had there been any plans, I would have declared it openly. There are still no plans, as of now. And to say we are not political is wrong. Whoever votes is political and votes for a political party and the leader.”
Never hesitant to nail his colour to the mast and always active on social media, Kher said, “It is the right of every citizen to express one’s opinion about the nation and I love to be vocal on various issues. People from the mountains are not hesitant to speak their minds. I talk about the nation, irrespective of whether it suits some or doesn’t.”
His ‘Kuch bhi ho sakta hai’ (anything can happen)-2014, reel life chat show may have gone off air, but in real life this philosophy never disappoints him, not even in his old home town, a place where he was born and brought up.
A people oriented person, who loves to strike a chord with the public, sharing a recent anecdote said, he encountered a passerby, Gian Chand during one of his walks along with friends in the suburbs of Shimla.
“He failed to recognize me, despite introducing myself, he continued to draw a blank,” he said, adding that he was touched by his innocence and felt humbled.
“It was only after I made a video call to his son, an army man who instantly recognized me, that Gian Chand was convinced,” he laughed, adding that he has so far done 518 films.
Kher is looking forward to shooting a film for his home production in Lahaul and Spiti and a web series to be shot in Shimla for which he has already given his nod.
“Himachal is a beautiful place. It has huge potential to become an ideal film destination. During my recent meeting with the Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, I got an opportunity to go through the Film Policy that was shared with me. Once it is implemented, it will open new vistas to film shootings,” said Kher.
He didn’t miss a chance to go down the memory lane and even tried to iron out his exasperation that he was living with, all these 47-years, since the incident at the All India Radio Shimla, when he was once rejected the job of a casual announcer.
“I walked into AIR, unannounced last Saturday and asked for an impromptu live programme,” he said.
During his three-minute programme that went on air, much to the surprise for the AIR listeners, he recalled, how he was rejected by the duty officer on a cold winter morning of Shimla in December 1974, on his first day as a casual announcer, just because he had fumbled while summarizing the programme schedule.
“I have no regrets. Had it not been for the twist, I wouldn’t have joined Drama School and become an actor. My father always taught me that failure is an event, never a person. Sometime failure is a stepping stone to success ,” he said.
All dreams come true, one just needs to chase them, with honesty and hard work, he added.
Kher has even promised to send 10 concentrators and other equipment to extend aid in these Covid times to a Shimla based NGO, Almighty Blessings and five to seven concentrators for the Army Hospital.
He expressed concern over the Shimla city turning into a concrete jungle, nevertheless its beauty and simplicity of the people continue to keep him hooked.