London, July 4 : An Indian origin Brit medic has taken time out from treating people and saving lives to become a singing, dancing, murdering gangster in Bollywood.
Dr Mahesh Kumar, the head of radiology at Pennine Acute Trust, which runs hospitals in Oldham, Rochdale, Bury and north Manchester, spent a month in Bangalore to work on the film 'Accident'.
The film, which premieres in London on July 4 and will be released in America later this month, is a smash hit in India.
Kumar, from Bolton, plays the role of 'Maresh Longa', an underworld figure with a nightclub and a pirate DVD empire.
The doctor temporarily traded in the radiology rooms of northwest England to travel to Bangalore last October, when his friend, Ramesh Aravind, a successful Indian film director, offered him the role out of the blue.
Kumar, 43, said he jumped at the chance to prove his skills as an actor, which he first developed in amateur dramatics as a student in India.
"Some of my friends are involved in mainstream film production and they just said that the role would suit me, so did I want to do it? I couldn't resist it," the Independent quoted him, as saying.
"I used my annual leave to film in Bangalore for 20 days at the end of last year and this included acting and voice dubbing. The director and crew were absolutely brilliant, and it's really exciting to see the film get released here," he added.
In spite of his entry into the highly competitive and lucrative Indian film industry, he was not tempted to give up practising medicine.
"I'm not giving up my professional role just yet. Nothing would take me away from my clinical work, but this was a great thing to do. It's only a small role but I had a fantastic time," he said.