Darbhanga (Bihar): Cricketer-turned -politician Kirti Azad is all set to debut as an actor in a film which focuses on east Indian state of Bihar's falling behind in the national cricket scene after bifurcation 15 years ago. The third-term Lok Sabha member from Darbhanga is shooting for the movie Kirket at different locations in Darbhanga.
The popular game is colloquially referred as Kirket in Bihar. Asked how easy is acting, Azad told PTI on-location, "Since I am enacting the character of myself, it comes naturally and I find no reason to be afraid of facing the camera during shoots."
He said besides Darbhanga, the film's shooting would also take place in Patna, Noida and Mumbai. The movie, scripted by Vishal Vijay Kumar, who had penned the story of Sunny Doel's new movie Ghayal Once Again and directed by Joginder Singh, is expected to hit the screen early next year, its producer Sonu Jha said.
Jha said Sonam Chabbra is the lead female character in the movie. Azad said the BJP MP from Patna Sahib, Shatrughan Sinha would also make a special appearance in the film.
The guest actor-cricketer line-up includes B. S. Bedi, Manoj Prabhakar, Ajay Jadeja, Maninder Singh and Surendra Khanna, Azad said.
Famous International Umpire S. K. Bansal has also essayed a role in the movie. Azad, a member of India's victorious team in 1983 World Cup in England, has been involved in protracted fight for grant of the BCCI affliation to Bihar for resumption of cricket-related activities.
After being kept away from BCCI since bifurcation of the state into Jharkhand in 2000, Bihar has been accorded status of Associate member of the apex cricketing body of the country recently.
Azad, son of former Bihar chief minister and respected Congress leader Bhagwat Jha Azad, was born in Bihar but played for Delhi throughout his career in Ranji and other domestic tournaments and went on to represent the country in Tests and One-Day Internationals. Asked what prompted him to settle for the subject, Azad said his sole motive remained to highlight plight of the cricketers and youths of Bihar due to lack of infrastructure facilities and no-affiliation with Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
"The BCCI is responsible for arranging funds to the affiliated states for development of infrastructure and related facilities to promote the game.
"Due to lack of training, participating in state-level tournaments, the cricketers from Bihar don't get chances to play the game at the higher level," the former India player said.
Saba Karim from the state represented Jharkhand while working in TISCO. Many other cricketers of Bihar like Abinash Kumar and Amikar Dayal could not make much headway in their respective careers as Bihar was barred from participating in domestic tournaments due to lack of affiliation from the BCCI.