Published On: Fri, May 20th, 2016

Now Ashraf Rahi, after Mastana and Babu Baral


Ashraf Rahi

You may question their sense of entitlement but there’s no questioning what becomes of artists in this country when they are in need, especially if they belong to regional entertainment circuits where appreciation seldom translates into a decent living. Examples of performers such as Mastana and Babu Baral leave nothing more to be said about the sad state of affairs.

After well-known stage names like Mastana and Babu Baral, another experienced stage actor Ashraf Rahi is such an individual who at present appears to lose his fight next to hepatitis C and diabetes. The 62-year-old actor has up to now performed in more than 3,000 stage productions but at present, he is compelled to inquire each career verdict that he took in the past five decades.

Rahi stated in an interview that he was never valued for his work. She said, “For the last five decades I have been entertaining audiences. But now when I need help, I have no one by my side,” he said. His body may be struggling in protest but to keep the stove burning, Rahi is forced to continue working.

Government lethargy dissatisfied him the most. He shared that “In India, things are quite different. Their government gives artists respect and even those who are passed their prime are considered as stars,” he further added that in Pakistan, nobody actually cares. “We hide our life troubles and ensure that when we are on stage, we keep the audiences amused,” he mourned, “I don’t want to give the impression to producers that I am unable to work which is why I am still working. I am not going to knock on their doors [government] and beg them to help me. It’s not like they are blind or deaf.”

Presenting instances of famous plays for example Sawa SairAshiqo Gham Na KarnaBara Maza Aye GaAj Aakhan Waris Shah NounDouble Sawari and Shartiya Mithay, Rahi added that he has given much to Lahore’s theatre industry. He even worked into TV plays and thinks his roles in Khufiya Jazeera and Ainak Wala Jin amid his favorite performances.

Busy lifestyle improve mental functioning

Although Rahi is still empty-handed. He said “I am on very expensive medication. I live in a rented house and I have a wife and four children to feed. I know I am not the first person to see all this. Mastana and Babo Baral suffered like me,”


About the Author

Sidra Muntaha

- Sidra Tul Muntaha is a journalist (MA-Mass Communication and M.Phil in Mass Communication) based in Lahore. She is working as an editor at fashion, style and entertainment in the section of the Kooza. She writes fashion and entertainment articles for The Kooza News.