That handsome hunk on screen

That handsome hunk on screen

He is the tall, strapping, good-looking Punjabi guy from Delhi who created a flutter when he won the coveted Mr India title in 1996. Cut to 2017: he is a recognised telly star and a corporate grooming expert. For Sachin Khurana,  work spells sheer manna, as he goes about his hectic schedule every day.

"I play Anand, the progressive thinker, the uncle of the main lead in the serial Un Dino Ki Kahani," says Sachin with a smile, as we chat on the sets of his latest show that kicked off on air recently. It is an urban middle-class setting in Ahmedabad in the 90s when social media was still in its nascent stages. "It's a key role as it brings the main characters together and also adds a touch of open-mindedness to the proceedings in the serial," he says.

What made him sign on was the pivotal characterisation of his part, as well as the whiff of nostalgia that came along. "It has been an amazing experience, reliving the fashion sensibilities of the 90s by wearing high-waisted trousers and form-fitting shirts, with audio cassettes and old-fashioned television sets with knobs in the house. A sharp shift from the flatscreens and Bluetooth these days," he smiles.

Khurana has made his mark through several serials earlier, including Avinash IPS, Salaam Zindagi, Aapki Antara, Chandramukhi, Saat Phere: Saloni Ka Safar... His repertoire brings in his stalwart ramp presence in over 500 fashion shows on domestic and foreign turf, more than 200 advertisements, and a clutch of silver screen specials in Dasvidaniya, Ankur Arora Murder Case, Unforgettable and Pyaar Mein Twist.

But spinning off his rather magnetic presence, Sachin has also been taking sessions in corporate grooming. He recently shot a series of videos to train the multiplex personnel at PVR. "I played out the demeanour to be employed when say the projector whimpers, or someone misplaces a bag, or a person is sozzled... there are genteel, firm ways of handling such situations adroitly. So, soft skills go well beyond simply dining etiquette and time management," he asserts, and adds with a laugh, "These days, more importantly, you need to know what not to wear to work!"

So, which city is his favourite, Delhi or Mumbai? "Delhi for food, family, fun, and Mumbai for assignments, its cosmopolitan mix and fabulous culture," he grins. Prod him about what he is reading other than scripts at the moment, and he retorts, "Documentaries on harmful food intake. I am slowly making a shift towards vegetarianism; it is certainly a healthier way of life."

Isn't it tough, especially considering his passion for butter chicken? "Not really. There are brilliant protein houses in broccoli and dals for bodybuilding, and I find if vegetarian food is cooked well, it is more delicious than meat," he reveals.

What's also keeping him busy in his spare time is social media as he is, by confession, a manic phone buff and an avid web addict. There are lots of interactions with fans through his Facebook page and Twitter account, and Sachin loves every second of the applause and appreciation that is flowing in for his latest show.

Living in the moment is a realisation Sachin counts as his biggest learning. "I believe in making the most of today as life is too short and unpredictable. Time rolls on so fast, it is unbelievable. Travel, love, live, laugh," he says. "I have grown up with a sizeable amount of attention since my early days, but I have my head firmly planted on my shoulders. Otherwise, it is just so easy to get carried away in the glamour world," he shares.

What's his daily anthem? "I work out thrice a week at least at the gymnasium, or do weight training and a high-intensity workout. But my best solution to everything, even snapping out of a low mood, is to go for a run," confesses Sachin, as he readies to sprint off for his next shot. Clearly, nothing succeeds like action.

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