The inimitable, not that it stops scores from imitating him, Shatrughan Sinha is on another trip right now. This week after receiving Filmfare’s Lifetime Achievement award, the actor-politician-rhetorician-activist took off for a holy pilgrimage to Shirdi with his friend Pahlaj Nihalani.
“It’s been an eventful time for me,” says Mr Sinha with a sigh. “I was finally honoured with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Dayr aaye durust aaye (late but welcome). However I must say that awards to me and Amitabh Bachchan at this juncture of our respective lives and careers can only be meaningful if they serve as an inspiration for the younger generations. That having said, I can’t deny the fact that a Lifetime Achievement award is no longer seen as the full stop that it used to be. Look at Amitabh .He wins a Lifetime Achievement award every year. And he continues to do great work. Piku and Pink are outstanding films.”
Shatrughan Sinha who was last seen playing a politician in Ram Gopal Varma’s Rakta Charitra is planning to return to acting soon. “But the role has to justify my presence. I was supposed to play my daughter Sonakshi’s father in Akira. Finally everyone decided it was better if we came together for the first time in a film that justified our presence together. There an offer from Anurag Kashyap which I liked. But it didn’t work out.”
He looks forward to reuniting with Amitabh Bachchan. “We did some outstanding work together in Bombay To Goa, Dostana, Kala Patthar and other films. We had our differences somewhere down the line. But he was and is a caring and giving co-star, always concerned about his co-actors. I remember during the shooting of our first film together Bombay To Goa Amitabh accidentally hit my face with his elbow and my nose began to bleed profusely. He panicked more than I did. I’ll never forget the look of concern and worry on his face. Today we are both experienced mature and hopefully wise souls. Someone should write another film for the two of us.”
Mr Sinha’s political fortunes within the BJP continue to be uncertain. “They have shown little respect for my opinion or presence. But I will continue to be a faithful and loyal soldier for my party. Friends and well-wishers say I am taken for granted by own party. I say, that’s okay. Apne ghar mein koi star nahin hota. No one treats me like a star at home.”
One occurrence that has pleased BJP’s most loyal and outspoken soldier is the closing of ranks between Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar. “I always knew they would wash away their differences. I am glad to see it happening. During the coming year there will be many significant political developments in our country. Wait and watch,” warns the man with the golden gyan.