Badi Uzzaman

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Mohammed Badi Uzzaman Azmi[1] (8 March 1939 – 14 June 2011), better known as Badi Uzzaman, was a Pakistani-British television and film actor. According to The Guardian, Uzzaman was perhaps best known for his role as a hospital patient in the 1986 television series, The Singing Detective, opposite actor Michael Gambon.[1][2] He later appeared in numerous television roles during his career, often as a supporting character, including Torchwood, Inspector Morse, Coronation Street, Cracker, The Bill and Casualty.[1][2]

Uzzaman was born on 8 March 1939, in Phulpur, Azamgarh, British India.[1] His father worked for the railway industry, so he moved to the city of Abbottabad in present-day Pakistan.[1] He continued to move with his family depending on his father's job transfers, which included time in both Quetta and Lahore.[1] Uzzaman graduated from Government College, Abbottabad, in 1959, where he studied English and Urdu.[1][2]

Uzzaman began his career as a radio presenter in Pakistan. He switched to acting, appearing in roles of Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV) following the state-owned channel's launch in 1964.[1]

In 1984, Uzzaman was cast in Malia, a Pakistani film about a traveling fair with a strong, underlying theme against the martial law imposed by the government of General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.[1][2] In the film, Uzzaman played five different characters.[3] The film was sharply rebuked by Zia's government,[1][2] and had to be completed in London.[3] Uzzaman left Pakistan and was granted political asylum in the United Kingdom soon after Malia's release.[1][2] He became a British citizen.[1][2]

He is also notable for playing two television characters who were subjected to racially motivated attacks. The first was in the 1989 Casualty episode "Victim of Circumstances", where he appeared as Bharat Patel, a shopkeeper who was beaten up by two skinheads who had attacked his son in an earlier assault. In 1994, he appeared in the Cracker episode "To Be a Somebody (Part One)", in which he played the role of Shahid Ali, a shopkeeper who was the first victim of spree killer Albie Kinsella, played by Robert Carlyle.

At the age of 72, Uzzaman died of a lung infection on 14 June 2011.[1][2]

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