A well-recognised faced on the Hindi film screen and on television, character actor Ram Mohan was known for films like Haath Ki Safai(1974), Himalay Se Ooncha (1975) and Rahu Ketu(1978). Starting his career in the 50s, he went on to act in approximately 240 films, in a career that spanned 60 years. Ram Mohan was also actively involved with various associations working for the well-being of the people associated with the film industry, such as CINTAA.
Born on November 2, 1929 in Ambala cantonment, his father, Dr Sadhu Ram Sharma hailed from Jagadhri and had his own hospital in Ambala. Ram Mohan’s mother, Yogmaya Sharma was a housewife, and Ram Mohan was her only child though he had an older sister and brother from his father’s first marriage.
Matriculating from Ambala’s Arya School, he completed his BA from GMN College and headed to Bombay in 1949 to follow his passion—films. One of his acquaintances, Mahesh Uppal from Ambala served as a painter with Famous Art Studio near Bombay Central and stayed in the studio itself. Ram Mohan stayed with Uppal at the studio for two months, doing the daily rounds of studios like Ranjit Movietone.
He got a break when he managed to impress well-known actor-director, Jagdish Sethi. Joining Sethi, Ram Mohan started playing small characters in the former’s films, landing his first significant role in the Jagdish Sethi-directed Insaan (1952). After Ram Mohan took on the challenge of riding a horse for a scene, which had been declined by actor Kamal Kapoor, Sethi not only increased his role but also cast him as the side hero in Jaggu (1952). The success of Jaggu saw Ram Mohan go on to play key characters in the coming years in films like Shree Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1953), Pensioner (1954), Hotel (1956), Lal-e-Yaman (1956), Devar Bhabhi (1958), Miss 58 (1958), Night Club (1958), Raj Singhasan (1958), Bhagwan Aur Shaitan (1959), Chacha Zindabad (1959), Do Behnein (1959), Tipu Sultan (1959), Angulimaal (1960), Bahadur Lutera (1960), Choron Ki Baraat (1960), Kaala Aadmi (1960), and Mr Superman Ki Waapsi (1960).
While Ram Mohan did not get the opportunity to play hero, he made a mark as a villain and character artiste. In a career spanning 60 years, he acted in approximately 240 films including Hariyali Aur Rasta (1962), Mere Huzoor (1968), Shor (1972), Kitaab (1977), Sawan Ko Aane Do (1979), Shaan (1980), Jiyo To Aise Jiyo (1981), Nadiya Ke Paar (1982),Angoor (1982), Ghulaami (1985), Batwara (1989), Rangeela (1995), and Koyla (1997). He also acted in TV serials such as Mirza Ghalib, Tara, Shatranj, Sansaar, Bahadur Shah Zafar, Yeh Dilli Hai and Mahabharat.
Ram Mohan was also the Vice President of the Cine & TV Artistes Association (CINTAA) for four years and the General Secretary for six years. He was actively involved with various associations working for the well-being of the people associated with the film industry.
Father of three sons and a daughter, Ram Mohan passed away on 6 December, 2015.
Courtesy: Shishir Krishna Sharma