Anang Desai is known for playing Tulsidas Parekh aka Babuji, the head of the Parekh family in the comedy family sitcom Khichdi, which aired between 2002 and 2004. A movie based on the serial was also released in 2010. After graduating from the National School of Drama (Delhi), Anang became a part of the institute on a professional level and performed Hindi theatre extensively before joining the television and film industry.
He was last seen in ZEE Theatre’s teleplay titled Shadyantra, which is touted to be an edge-of-the-seat thriller packed with psychological intrigue. It also features Hina Khan in the lead role. In an interview with News18 Showsha, Anang Desai shared the experience of working with Hina, and how his role in the film is different from his other characters.
“I really enjoyed working with Hina Khan in Shadyantra. It was a pleasant experience. She herself is a seasoned actress and we had good vibes on the sets. We bonded well and we worked well together,” shares Anang.
The teleplay narrates the story of a married couple, Rohan Tiwari and Natasha Malhotra Tiwari. Natasha is the heiress of a construction company but leads a contented life far removed from business intrigue. Then a shocking murder changes Natasha’s life forever and investigating police officer Mohan Khanna arrives to solve the mystery.
Talking of his connection with Hina Khan’s role in the film, Anang shares, “This is a very different kind of a role that I did here. I’m an employee in the company which is owned by her husband (essayed by Chandan Roy Sanyal) in the film. I interact with Hina’s character Natasha and her husband Rohan at regular intervals as a senior employee of their company, and I come to their house very often to discuss matters. There are certain things which bring me in contact with Hina on a personal level, in the teleplay. I reveal certain things to her, about Rohan. Eventually, there is a murder in the teleplay, and its plot revolves around who committed that murder.”
Anang’s role as Tulsidas Parekh aka Babuji is one of the most memorable comic roles essayed on Indian television. We asked him if he did ever anticipate that his role would become extremely popular and if he was sceptical to join the show when he was first offered Khichdi.
“I wasn’t sceptical at all, because when Aatish Kapadia and JD (Jamnadas Majethia) narrated the whole script of the first episode, by the way, the narrated the script, I was sure this was going to work. I said that this is a wonderful character, which an actor rarely gets. I wasn’t sceptical, on the contrary, I was very happy that I was offered this role, and I just grabbed it. I wasn’t sure of how the audience will react, but I always thought that this is a wonderful script and we tried our best to make it work brilliantly. And I’m very happy that the audience has loved it and over all these years, the recall value is tremendous. I’m glad that people loved my character and Khichdi too, so much so, that we also had a film made on it. It is also remarkable that for the first time, a TV show has been created into a film, that too with the same characters, ” explains the Badhaai Ho Badhaai actor.
On being asked about when can fans expect Khichdi 2, the Gunaah actor reveals, “Yes, we might come back very soon. And I will only be doing the role of Babuji, that is for sure. We will have to wait and watch when things proceed. I’m unable to divulge more details for now. However, whenever we will be getting a confirmation. But, I’m sure, things are going to happen soon.”
Speaking of his off-screen equation with Hansa aka Supriya Pathak, and Rajeev Mehta’s Praful, Anang smilingly shares, “Oh, the off screen equations with both of them have been wonderful. We vibed with each other so very well, and we all were like one big family on the sets of Khichdi. We all gelled very well, and the result of the same reflects on the screen as well. Even after the show, we are very much in contact and we meet each other off and on.”
In a career that spans more than 2 decades, Anang has had the opportunity to work in films featuring actors like Amitabh Bachchan, Anil Kapoor, Salman Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Akshay Kumar and more. On being asked, who is his current favourite actor in the industry, the actor says, “I’m lucky to have the opportunity to share screen space with all of them. It will be difficult to choose one of them because I have a memorable experience of working with all of them. I feel all of them are wonderful, and I would love to work on a project with them in near future.”