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Not just a detective

Adil Khandekar Hussain is not your everyday actor. His name may not evoke much response but the man is doing responsible work alongside Om Puri in "Jasoos Vijay", a DD-BBC show on AIDS, says SANGEETA BAROOAH PISHAROTY.


ADIL KHANDEKAR Hussain...the name rings no bell in Delhi. But back home in his home State Assam, he can immediately be recognised, not individually perhaps but of course, as one of the members of the Bhaiamama group, the State's most famous stand-up comedian band till now. A rage in this North-Eastern corner, collective fame enveloped Adil along with three of the other band members with numerous live shows packed with an audience often in splits. They also brought put audiotapes, the most remembered, of course with a chuckle, is the `Bhaiamama Ramayan'.

But as fate had it, the rage had to die down, rather accidentally when the rest of the band died in a car crash near Guwahati in the early nineties thus sealing the fate of Bhaiamama group. A tragic end to a comic saga.

"But practically, I left the group a little before the accident. It was in 1990 that I left Assam to join the National School of Drama. They got a replacement but he too was finished in the crash," says Adil. From NSD began his journey to London as part of a fellowship to study theatre and he tried

his talent in the British dramatics. "But I was dissatisfied. They were more into naturalistic acting and I was keen on theatrical acting," says Adil.

And so he returned eastwards.

Now, seen as Jasoos Vijay in the BBC-Doordarshan joint production by the same name on Doordarshan National, Adil is eager to talk about his present more than his past. "The serial is not just a detective's tale. The script very subtly rings around it popular wrong belief around the dreaded AIDS and aim at its awareness. The show, being anchored by a talented actor like Om Puri has indeed raised its respectabilty," says Adil. Having canned four episodes so far, the serial which began its innings early this month, has its target audience in small town residents and Doordarshan being the most reached channel across the country, turned out to be the best vehicle.

"Everyday, we receive about 40-45 mails from viewers with queries," informs the actor. As per the format of the serial, Om Puri has travelled to many a small town in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan to interact with people on AIDS awareness.

"Jasoos Vijay is a very ordinary guy with a detective bend of mind. He spreads awareness without being preachy," Adil reasons. Having known the serial director Dilip Shankar since the days he acted in the play `Othello', he agreed to be `directed' by him. Otherwise, he says, he "hates" the word director. "Director sounds like dictator. In a film or a TV production, it is fine but when used in theatre, it becomes an arrogant terminology. In plays, you co-create, the director is just a facilitator," Adil opines, though he himself directed a play on the hotbed of Jammu and Kashmir in 1997 soon after returning from Amsterdam when he "had to learn" Kathakali and Chhau dances as part of culture study in a local university.

Open to the idea of acting in films, Adil, however, is not ready to hard-sell himself...maybe, waiting for the right eyes to set upon him. Meanwhile, he has Om Puri for company and the huge Doordarshan viewership to watch him on screen.

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