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    Feb 2010


    Default Chandragupta Maurya will be back, but not with Ashish Sharma in the lead

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    We were the first to report about Sagar Arts and 72 Degree Northe’s Chandragupta Maurya coming back on Sony Entertainment Television after it went off air abruptly with Imagine TV shutting down. Yes, it is definitely good news for the fans of the show. But here’s a twist? Its lead, Ashish Sharma, has opted out of it. He will no longer flex his muscles and swirl the sword as Chandragupta Maurya.

    “I am not doing Chandragupta Maurya (CGM) though I wanted it to come back on another channel after Imagine TV went off air. But then I had a lot of pending work to do while I was doing CGM and hence as soon as the show went off air I got busy setting my company Smoking Carrots”, says Ashish.

    The actor is currently working on two short films which will be shot in Rajasthan. “Now that the windows have opened for me I would like to do what I always wanted to do. Though CGM has been very important to me and it was amazing to see 90,000 people filing a petition for its return, I won’t be a part of it.”

    So are the makers okay with his decision? “They know my plans and have been very supportive. In fact, I spoke to my producer (Nilanjana Purkayasstha of Northe) too. Initially when the show went off air she wanted me to wait for two weeks and I did wait for two weeks, but even today the show coming on Sony is still a possibility, so ultimately I chose to walk out.”

    But there are reports of the historical saga returning on the screen. “See there is no official confirmation yet, either from the channel or the Turner group, as far as I know.”

    And what about the fans? “The fans are attached to the show and not me. But yes, I wanted CGM to come back on another channel as I love the show. But then beyond the emotional connect it’s about the longevity and practicality. I know I am being selfish at this point of time but then I know where I want to go. But I promise my fans that I will come up with something much better.” So does this “something much better” means him signing the upcoming Jay Mehta show? “I wouldn’t want to comment on it yet.”

    Finally, Ashish shares while bidding goodbye, “For me I am Chandragupta Maurya. I have lived it for eight months and while quitting the show, I will be leaving behind a part of me as well.”

    Well, with Ashish quitting, the search for new Maurya begins…



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