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Aakash Bathija’s Inspiring Journey: From 126 kg to 82 kg in 2 Years and Working with SRK & Deepika Padukone in ‘Pathaan’

The cast of Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, and John Abraham-starrer ‘Pathaan’ is proving to be a box office hit.[0] ETimes had the chance to chat with Aakash Bathija, one of the supporting actors, who revealed his inspiring fitness journey and his experience of bagging a role in the movie.

Speaking about his weight loss journey, Aakash shared, “The main purpose of transforming myself was to break the “hero’s fat friend[0] stereotype.[0] My physicality (being fat) would get me cast, not my acting skills.[1] I took a two-year hiatus and worked on improving my physical appearance.[2] It took me two years to go from 126 kilograms to 82 kilograms.[1] The 44 kg drop was not linear.[2] I experienced numerous obstacles.[1] He started off as an overweight individual, but it all ended up working out for him when he was cast in an action film alongside Shah Rukh Khan.[2][0]

He further commented on bagging the big film, “Siddharth (Anand) sir and Mamta ma’am have known of me since a while. They referred me to Shanoo Sharma, the casting director of the movie. There was a due audition process. If I remember there were 30-35 other actors auditioning for this part. So after a couple of rounds of screen tests, I was finalised. It would be ignorant of me to not consider myself lucky for bagging ‘Pathaan.’[1][0]

Aakash opened up about working with King Khan and Deepika Padukone and said, “Everyone talks about his charm, warmth and respect. We all are very well aware, and have experienced the same. But what blew me away was his boyish charm and energy as an actor. We really felt we weren’t shooting with SRK sir but that we were actually shooting with a 21 year old boy who is doing his first film. Shah Rukh Khan sir’s enthusiasm and energy was that infectious. Oh and the man smells like a million bucks. Whenever I would ask him what perfume he wears, he would jokingly say – ‘it’s the scent of success, beta’.[0][0]

The actor’s physical and mental transformation is truly inspiring.

0. “‘From 126 Kgs To 82’: Pathaan Actor Says He ‘Wanted To Break Hero’s Fat Friend Stereotype'” msnNOW, 3 Feb. 2023,

1. “SRK’s ‘Pathaan’ Costar Aman Talks About His Inspiring Fitness Transformation”, 4 Feb. 2023,

2. “Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Pathaan’ co-star Aakash Bathija on his weight loss journey: I took a 2-year break to drop from 126 kg to 82 kg”, 3 Feb. 2023,

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