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[Aftab is fascinated with Osama][Aftab is fascinated with Osama]

   Nidhi Taparia

The name is:
Aftab Shivdasani

Claim to fame:
Koi Mere Dil Se Pooche with Esha Deol. Also acted in Kasoor, Love Ke Liye Kuch Bhi Karega and Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat. Will be seen with Yukta Mookhey in Pyaasa, Amisha Patel in Suno Sasurjee, and Akshay Kumar in Awara Pagal Deewana.

How Net-savvy are you?:
I'd give myself a four. I'm semi-literate when it comes to the Internet: I email, chat, surf and search online. But there's still a lot I need to figure out about the Net. I actually bought myself a PC and Internet connectivity a few months ago, because I wanted to download music from Napster and Kazaa. But I haven't started yet.

How often do you surf?:
Usually once a week. I check my Hotmail account, my fan mail and chat with friends and relatives on MSN messenger. But the strangest experience has been chatting with my fans online. Most of them don't believe it's me. Some are enamoured; others hurl the choicest abuses. Yet, their feedback about my films, my acting, roles, clothes, etc is a continuous reality check for me. It helps me figure out what my audience would like to see and keeps me grounded.

What do you like or hate most about the Internet?:
I like the fact that it makes people so accessible, so easily! I also don't know what I'd do without email as that's the only way I keep in touch with friends and relatives abroad. What I hate is the fact that the Internet never forgets. Old articles and stories which otherwise would be assigned to a rubbish bin are still stored online.

Your idea of a perfect Web site?:
It would be full of accurate information about me, my films etc. I have actually thought about getting my own Web site, but just haven't had the time. I'd like it to be user friendly and equipped with the latest multimedia, so my fans could download screen savers and wallpapers, and write to me.

Do you go ego surfing, checking out pages or sites devoted to you?:
Yes, once. I was surprised at the amount of information I could find... But the content was not a surprise: I'd read most of the stuff before. I haven't seen any of my fan sites though. That is something I would like to experience.

However ego surfing brings out mixed reactions in me. I do feel good about being written about and having fan pages dedicated to me... On the other hand, there's no privacy.

What's your favourite Web based gadget?:
A laptop and an MP3 player are on my wish list -- the MP3 player, especially, since I thrive on music.

Whom would you like to chat with online?:
It would be a toss up between Osama bin Laden and Gen Musharraf. Osama fascinates me. I wonder how he feels about being the world's most wanted man!

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