Subsisting Afghan SRK hopes for silver lining in Karachi after Taliban ban cinema

“You can call up any Afghan across the globe and ask them about me, I bet they’ll know me,” said Farhad Khan whose impersonation of Bollywood’s King Khan led him to act in movies, but it all nosedived as Taliban took over Kabul last year declaring fashion and films illegal.

Farhad was still shooting his Dehshatgard [Terrorist] (now renamed to Commando) when the news of Taliban incursion gripped the city and what laid around it. He vividly remembers the ghastly afternoon and it still traumatizes him. He literally “had to drop everything in the midst ofshoot in the suburbs of Kabul and rushed to his family for a way out of Afghanistan”.

Soon after finding shelter in Karachi, a city he’s pretty familiar with since his childhood but still embroiled with the refugee status here, Farhad’s father and his toddler daughter bade him forever goodbyes. Their deaths shook his soul but braving the series of misfortunes was his only option. He had gotten acclimatized with the hardships from the moment he escaped his house in Afghanistan.

But even so, having lost his career, family members, and vogue, he still hopes to get back most of it if and when given chance in local, international industry.

“They know it all,” Farhad Khan responded with broken voice when asked why he didn’t think staying in Afghanistan was an option. “They know where all the famous people lived and I feared my humiliation.”

While still Karachi minor sells hand-embroidered clothes in streets for family survival trying to escape the warring territories, said Farhad, the news of Nazar Mohammad’s horrific death further painted gloom to the already dark picture. “From that point, I knew there’s no looking back. No going Back.”

Karachi minor sells hand-embroidered clothes in streets for family survival

Now he lives in Karachi and works in different markets to sell cosmetics with his friend to make a band-aid living for him and five family members, and although the life here is toiling,  hoping he’ll soon get another chance to act. “Once I get another gig, I am going to make up for all the loss incurred since the appalling Kabul takeover.”