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Exclusive! Gulshan Devaiah: Audience who loved me in dark characters might be upset seeing Aditya in Shiksha Mandal

Actor Gulshan Devaiah says he took the web series, Shiksha Mandal, as an opportunity to prove his versatility by playing a "good man".

Exclusive! Gulshan Devaiah: Audience who loved me in dark characters might be upset seeing Aditya in Shiksha Mandal
Gulshan Devaiah, a scene from Shiksha Mandal
  • Arundhuti Banerjee

Last Updated: 12.16 PM, Sep 18, 2022


Known for his acting skills in some of the prominent projects that include Mard Ko Dard Nahi Hota, Hate Story, and Duranga, Gulshan Devaiah has built his audience by playing some of the dark characters very conveniently on-screen. However, in the latest released web series, Shiksha Mandal, which addresses the real issue of education scams, the actor plays a torchbearer of the truth, quite the opposite of everything that he has done in the past.

In conversation with OTTplay, Gulshan shared his thoughts on how, with each project, he is trying to prove his versatility as an actor and curate his career as an outsider of the entertainment industry.

Gulshan told OTTplay, "People who loved me playing dark characters on-screen would be disappointed seeing me in Shiksha Mandal because I am not playing a dark role here. Sorry guys, but this is another side of me as an actor that I am showing, so just watch it! (laughs)"

He continued, "On a serious note, the fun of being an actor is playing different people on-screen. We can always pretend to be another person. My dad always wanted me to be a doctor, and even though I am not a doctor in the show, my character Aditya Rai is preparing medical aspirants for their entrance exams so that they can be doctors in the future. It was an opportunity for me to play a good man and show my audience that I can play such characters too!"

The story deals with the existing corruption and scams in the education sector, especially for medical entrance exams, where students are trapped in earning their grades and clearing exams by following shortcuts that involve money scams and more.

Shiksha Mandal also features Pavan Malhotra and Gauahar Khan in pivotal roles as part of the narrative.

Gulshan started his journey in the entertainment industry with the feature film That Girl in Yellow Boots, and his performance got noticed by the audience and critics alike in Dum Maaro Dum, Shaitan, Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela, A Death In The Gunj, Ghost Stories, Footfairy, and Badhaai Do, among others. He has also appeared in web series like Smoke, Afsos, and Unpaused, to name a few.

Asked if breaking the set pattern of playing grey characters on-screen was a conscious decision, Gulshan explained how some risks are worth taking. "Of course, it was a chance for me to take on Shiksha Mandal to play a good guy and break the notion that I mostly play grey characters. But I also believe that, as an actor and an outsider, I only have to make those choices if I wish to change them. I believe in curating my career. I know when I am experimenting, I will make mistakes too, but it makes sense to do that too. Being diverse and versatile is in my nature as an artist. I am not really trying too hard; I have a genuine interest in experimenting with my craft," shared the actor.

Shiksha Mandal, directed by Syed Ahmad Afzal and also featuring Gauri Chakraborty, Maya Sahu, Puneet Kumar Mishra, and Iram Badar Khan, is streaming on MX Player.