Thriving on action
He thrives on action and risk is his middle name. Meet Kashif Qureshi, the 24-year-old Hyderabadi who has done over 2000 daring stunt shows in the country and overseas.
IN ACTION: Kashif Qureshi demonstrates a flying kick.
HE IS 24-yeasr-old, walking 5 ft 7 inches, and has endured innumerable fractures, back bone crashes and more. "Unless you break your bones you don't realise the importance of a healthy life," he says after over 2000 dare devil action feats. Meet Kashif Qureshi, whose middle name happens to be risk and his mantra - breaking the fear barrier.
It has been an upstream path for him though, akin to a salmon, he says. "When I woke up at two in the morning to practice, my parents sent me to a famous psychiatrist. It is no wonder that India has never produced a Jackie Chan or a Bruce Lee," says Kashif. A teetotaller, his diet has oodles of milk, chocolate, ice cream and cartoons. In fact his inspirations to do the impossible were Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. "I decided running on water after seeing the cartoon and that was my first fracture," he smiles. This apart his favourite artistes are Jackie Chan, Stallone, Mohammed Ali and Bruce Lee. He has seen Enter the Dragon 73 times, and is fascinated by the Oriental wisdom for its deeper understanding of the philosophy of action. A student of martial arts, he merges the essence of the philosophy and martial art techniques in his shows. One also sees the blending of action and glamour such as the fashion show, where he fused in the Dracula theme with the ramp, and the response was great.
Likewise, his Wild West theme -- the cowboy style retaliation and rescue act, at the Ramoji Film City got a tremendous response, so much so, that he went on to do the action feats at the corporate parties for Microsoft, Wipro and BPL. This apart, his overseas shows have been lauded especially at Qatar where the ecstatic sheikhs honoured him with a garland of Qatari riyals.
IN SYNCH: Kashif with his team.
His stunts defy the laws of gravity and he came close to death four times. "It felt being close to the creator," he says. His successful performance lies in his conviction, an invincible attitude and his team - the `Thunderbolt' comprising die-hard action fanatics. Wasif, the acrobat, Ali, the body building champion, Rahim, the gymnast, Mohammed, the wrestler and Kashif himself have one crucial element in place, timing, especially for the split second high impact feats that are dangerous. It could be the mid-air split kick, scaling up walls combined with the reverse somersault or the free flight down from an 18 feet elevation. And the guys can do it perfect on any surface be it wood or concrete and unprotected -- there is no carpet or padding here but sheer display of grit and passion. "Action is the name," says Kashif.
His motto is to give maximum level of the physical capacity and concentrate on the inner strengths and the result - a feat which stems from a 14-hour regime along with stunt visualisation. "Unless you tear open the ground you don't grow a garden," he quotes from the works of the famous poet Rumi. Kashif is a versatile reader be it Confucianism, Shinto-ism or Chi Guevara and watches Human Body telecast on BBC, the experiences of deep sea divers on National Geographic apart from the learning of psycho-cybernetics that he is enthused about.
Mostly focussed on the overseas shows at the moment he feels it is high time that he gets onto the celluloid. He has several offers from the Telugu film industry and aims to be an action actor/director. "A hero stands for inspiration like Stallone, Van Damme and Bruce Lee. I want to start where Lee has ended," he says. What disappoints him is the education system. "Confidence is not taught in the college, combined with the fact that the young people live aimlessly taking no risks. Maturity does not mean you become captive of the concept but it is an inner realisation of what your entity is all about," he sums up as he reaches for the goal he has set for himself.
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