Friday, April 19, 2024

Gulsher from ‘Alpha Bravo Charlie’ recalls fond memories of TV and more

Colonel (R) Qasim Shah has been a craze and inspirational icon for the youth of Pakistan since his first appearance in the Army-centric TV serial Sunehray Din presented in the early 90s by the PTV. His second project titled Alpha Bravo Charlie exalted his celebrity stature to a lofty pedestal and enviable zenith of fame.

The simplicity and innocence of Shah’s characters in both the plays, and his sense of humour and witty expressions in real life have won him a great circle of fans and friends. Although he did not act in a proper play after that, his charismatic presence has been and will be an indivisible part of most of the TV shows, award ceremonies, national and patriotic festivities and events, and, above all, social welfare activities and programmes. As he was in the town this week, he spoke to The Express Tribune about Alpha Bravo Charlie and better TV days.

Muttahir Ahmed Khan (MAK): How did you make your way to showbiz or performing arts? Do you belong to a family that already had any tinge of such fields and areas?

Qasim Shah (QS): I didn’t have even a remote or distant relative associated with TV or media or other such types of fields. It was by chance that I became a celebrity even after joining a disciplined and tough profession and institution. It is a pleasing fact that my affiliation with the army paved the way for my career as a celebrity. Actually, my off (leave) was banned as a punishment and I was amongst a few cadets who were present in the Pakistan Military Academy, Kakul, when all others were enjoying their vacations.

MAK: Were you expecting your fame and recognition as a pure performing artist or considering your role in Sunehray Din as an occasional and pleasant episode in life?

QS: I am thankful to the Almighty for blessing me with the fame and love of the people. As I was selected by Mr Shoaib, I wished to do my best and worked hard, but I never thought of being popular as an actor neither I could expect that overwhelming response from the masses to whatever I demonstrated. It was just fun and like an occasional affair that provided me joy and artistic exercise. I must mention, here, that although I got recognition as an artist after being a part of Sunehray Din, it was, in fact, Alpha Bravo Charlie that made me a celebrity and drama icon. I never thought of the next artistic prospect after the first project.

MAK: What was special in the name “Gulsher” because it was repeated in both the projects?

QS: It was decided by Mr Shoaib. He was quite conscious of and particular about the names of the characters and the way they sound when pronounced. He did not change the names of Faraz and some other characters, but chose Gulsher for me because it sounded good.

MAK: Alpha Bravo Charlie changed your life to a great extent. Did you ever think of switching over your profession or trying your luck in the arenas of entertainment media, showbiz and modelling?

QS: I am proud to be a soldier and I love to be revered as a soldier. Moreover, it is my affiliation

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