Sameer Khakkar had exhibited superlative acting prowess while portraying the role of ‘Khopdi’ in the by-now-cult serial ‘Nukkad’
There are very few times when any actor is known by the name of the character that he has played onscreen. One such actor was Sameer Khakkar who passed away today. Those who have lived the ‘era’ of the eighties and nineties will swear by the superlative acting that Sameer Khakkar had exhibited while portraying the role of ‘Khopdi’ in the by-now-cult serial ‘Nukkad’. Even though his character in the serial was that of an eternal drunkard, there was something about Sameer Khakkar that made the character of ‘Khopdi’ so very lovable and endearing.
Speaking to ETimes TV, Ganesh Khakhar (Sameer's cousin) said that Sameer died due to multiple organ failure and that he was suffering from respiratory issues. He added that Sameer was kept on ventilator, and then, gradually, his health detoriated and eventually, he collapsed at 4:30am this morning.
While Sameer Khakkar’s character of ‘Khopdi’ became so memorable on television, it was his portrayal of an alcoholic businessman who gets kidnapped in the silent film ‘Pushpaka Vimana’ that became iconic. What is remarkable about this role was that, despite the fact that the Kamal Haasan starrer film ‘Pushpaka Vimana’ was a silent film, the ‘silent-but-powerful portrayal’ of Sameer Khakkar that spoke volumes about his acting prowess, without him uttering even a single word!
Besides ‘Nukkad’ and ‘Pushpaka Vimana’, Sameer Khakkar has been an integral part of many other films and TV serials. While these films include 'Jawab Hum Denge', 'Nafrat Ki Aandhi', 'Pyar Deewana Hota Hain', 'Hum Hain Kamaal Ke', 'Dilwale', 'Eena Meena Deeka', 'Return of Jewel Thief', 'Patel Ki Punjabi Shaadi' … to name a few. On the other hand, Sameer Khakkar also had been a part of many other TV serials besides ‘Nukkad’. These TV serials include ‘Manoranjan’, ‘Circus’, ‘Naya Nukkad’, 'Shrimaan Shrimati', 'Sanjivani' and others.
As per a report in The Times Of India, Sameer Khakkar had taken a short break from the entertainment industry and had settled in the USA. And, after the break, he returned back to India and went onto do two Gujarati plays and the Bollywood film ‘Jai Ho’, which starred Salman Khan and Daisy Shah in the lead roles.
In an interview to a news portal, he had reportedly said that just like everyone else, he too was looking for work. He had added that he was hopeful that people who knew him will offer him work and that he would like to work till his last breath.