Sumit Nijhawan

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Sumit Nijhawan
Sumeet Nijhawan

OccupationActor and writer
Years active2004-till date
Known forBegum Jaan, Raja Natwarlal, Dishkiyaaoon, Maazii, Phas Gaye Re Obama, Contract, Sarkar Raj, Jannat 2, Jism 2, Mardaani 2

Sumit Nijhawan (born 28 December 1978) is an Indian actor residing in Mumbai, India. Nijhawan has appeared in films such as Contract, Sarkar Raj and Phas Gaye Re Obama. He also played Sarfaraz, a prominent character in the movie Jannat 2, where he made his presence felt. His first role as a main lead came with Maazii, which received the IBN Live Best Independent Film 2013 award.[1] He has since played substantial roles in films like Dishkiyaaoon, Raja Natwarlal and Vidya Balan starrer Begum Jaan where his role received significantly appreciation. His performance in Mardaani 2, an action thriller starring Rani Mukherji, received rave reviews from critics.

He will soon be seen in Lootcase, a FOX India film, scheduled to release in April 2020.

Early life and education[edit]

Nijhawan was born and brought up in Meerut and holds a Masters in International Business from the Delhi School of Economics. He has modeled for brands like Mitsubishi, Globus, Vitara and Larsen & Toubro.


Sumit Nijhawan made his debut in Bollywood in 2004 with Girlfriend. His second film was Jackie Shroff's Tum... Ho Na! in 2005, which was followed by Ram Gopal Varma's Aag in 2007 and Sarkar Raj (2008).[2] He also played the role of RD in Ram Gopal Varma's Contract[3] and received appreciation for his performance.[4][5] In 2010, his portrayal of Ali in multi-starrer Phas Gaye Re Obama,[6] won him much critical acclaim. Nijhawan was then seen in Jannat 2 in 2012, where he played one of the main negative characters, Sarfaraz,[7][8] and left quite an impact on the audience with his performance. He was also seen in Mahesh Bhatt's Jism 2 where he played the role of Randeep Hooda's friend and confidant.

He played his first lead role in the film Maazii, produced and directed by newcomer Jaideep Chopra. Though the film saw a limited release, it received great critical acclaim. It was nominated in the Best Film category for Dada Saheb Phalke Film Festival 2014 and received a Special Mention in the Indian Cine Film Festival 2014. It was also the official Best Foreign Film nomination at Sunset Film Festival, L.A, and Indie Film Festival, California, where it won an "Honorable Mention" and an "Award of Merit" respectively. Faheem Ruhani of India Today praised Sumit's performance saying he "plays the lead protagonist with the subtlety that is required of him. He portrays restrained anger with the indomitable spirit of a hero".[9] Film critic Subhash K. Jha called Maazii the "shocking surprise of the season]] and stated that the lead was "a complex role which Sumit Nijhawan plays with stoicism and smothered anger which works fine for the character." [10] IBN Live's review by Rohit Vats emphasized that Sumit's "body language separates him from the superheroes we see in usual Hindi films" and that "this works amazingly in his favor." [11]

Post-Maazii, Sumit was seen in a substantial role in Shilpa Shetty's home production Dishkiyaoon where he played a gangster, Iqbal Khaleefa, and gave "an implosive performance that ignites the frames".[12] Though the film as a whole did not work commercially and the lead protagonist was weak, Sonia Chopra, a critic for Sify wrote that "the talented supporting cast – Prashant Narayanan, Anand Tiwari and Sumit Nijhawan among others— salvaged the film." [13] The review in Hindustan Times mentioned that Khaleefa, as a "character artist stood out" and though Taran Adarsh was critical of the film, he approvingly wrote that Sumit "played the bad guy without much effort.".[14][15]

His role as the cop, Mr. Singh, in the Emraan Hashmi starrer Raja Natwarlal received a lot of appreciation. As Raja Sen of Rediff wrote, he had "a solid, menacing presence as a bad cop." [16] Vishal Verma of IndiaGlitz wrote "Sumit Nijhawan as a greedy cop is fantastic" and Subhash K. Jha said that Nijhawan was "brilliant as a corrupt cop." [17][18] Renowned film critic Komal Nahta mentioned in his blog review that Nijhawan provided "terrific support".[19] Sweta Kaushal of Hindustan Times appreciated Sumit's performance saying, "Sumit Nijhwan, who plays a corrupt cop, fits the bill perfectly and the lusty, evil look he has on his face each time he talks to Humaima just hits the nail." [20]

The film Begum Jaan where he played the strapping Pathan guard to Vidya Balan, got him rave reviews, with Hindustan Times calling him a worthy partner to her [21][22][23] One publication referred to his role as a throwback to Om Puri's role in Mirch Masala, with shades of Govind Nihalani's Tamas and Vinay Shukla's Godmother.[24]

He was recently seen in Mardaani 2, a sequel of Rani Mukherji's 2014 movie Mardaani. Critics lauded his role as Brij Shekhawat, a jealous senior cop who couldn’t stand the success of a women officer in his department. Vishal Verma, journalist and movie critic, stated that Sumit left a mark with his marvellous performance. [25] Mayank Shekhar felt Nijhawan had been finely hand-picked for the role [26] and senior critic Komal Nahta pointed out that Sumit made his presence felt in his role.[27]

He will also soon be seen in Lootcase, a Fox film expected to release in April 2020.

Personal life[edit]

Nijhawan lives in Mumbai and also enjoys writing and directing.


Year Film Role
2004 Girl Friend
2005 Tum... Ho Na!
2007 Aag
2008 Sarkar Raj Bala
2008 Contract RD
2010 Phas Gaye Re Obama Ali
2012 Jannat 2 Sarfaraz
2012 Jism 2 Sumit
2013 Maazii Tarun
2014 Dishkiyaaoon Iqbal Khaleefa
2014 Raja Natwarlal Inspector Singh
2017 Begum Jaan Saleem
2019 Mardaani 2 DSP Brij Shekhawat
2020 Lootcase Omar

As a Writer[edit]

Year Film Co-Writer Producer
2012-13 Maazii Shirish Sharma Jaideep Chopra, Narendra Singh


  1. ^ IBN Live. "'Maazii' voted as the Best Independent Film of 2013". IBN Live. Retrieved 8 October 2014.
  2. ^ "Sarkar Raj". Bharat Movies. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  3. ^ Filmvala, Aniz. "Contract". Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  4. ^ Roy, Priyanka. "Don't sign it". The Telegraph (Calcutta). Retrieved 11 April 2012.
  5. ^ Mohamed, Khalid. "On Planet Kill Time". Hindustan Times. Archived from the original on 31 December 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2012.
  6. ^ Nahta, Komal. "'Phas Gaye Re Obama' Review By Komal Nahta". Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  7. ^ Adarsh, Taran. "Jannat 2 | Latest Hindi Movie Review by Taran Adarsh - Bollywood Hungama". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  8. ^ Vats, Rohit. "Tweet Review: 'Jannat 2', first day, first show". IBN. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  9. ^ Ruhani, Faheem. "Movie Review - Maazii". India Today. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  10. ^ Jha, Subhash. "Maazii: Movie Review". SKJ Bollywood News. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  11. ^ Vats, Rohit. "'Maazii' review: It transports the audience to a dark, unseen world". IBN Live. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  12. ^ Jha, Subhash. "Subhash K Jha speaks about Dishkiyaoon". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  13. ^ Chopra, Sonia. "Dishkiyaoon review: Yet another formula gangster flick". Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  14. ^ Uniyal, Parmita. "Movie review: Harman Baweja, Sunny Deol's Dishkiyaoon doesn't make for a gripping thriller". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 8 October 2014.
  15. ^ Adarsh, Taran. "Dishkiyaoon". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  16. ^ Sen, Raja. "Review: Raja Natwarlal lacks directorial finesse". Rediff. Rediff. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  17. ^ Verma, Vishal. "Raja Natwarlal Review - Strictly for Emraan Hashmi's fans". Retrieved 8 October 2014.
  18. ^ Jha, Subhash. "Raja Natwarlal: Dapper Capper". SKJ Bollywood News. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  19. ^ Nahta, Komal. "Raja Natwarlal". Komal Nahta's blog. Retrieved 8 October 2014.
  20. ^ Kaushal, Sweta. "Movie review: Emraan Hashmi's Raja Natwarlal is a fun, one-time watch". Hindustan Times. Hindustan Times. Retrieved 17 October 2014.
  21. ^ Vats, Rohit. "Begum Jaan movie review". Hindustan Times. Hindustan Times. Retrieved 25 May 2017.
  22. ^ Adarsh, Taran. "Movie Review: Begum Jaan". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 25 May 2017.
  23. ^ Shekhar, Mayank. "'Begum Jaan' - Movie Review". Mid Day. Mid Day. Retrieved 25 May 2017.
  24. ^ Mukherji, Srijit. "'Begum Jaan' review". DNA. Retrieved 25 May 2017.
  25. ^ Verma, Vishal. "MARDAANI 2 movie review: Terrifically gripping, gritty, well etched & masterly performed". Glamsham. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
  26. ^ Shekhar, Mayank. "Mardaani 2 Movie Review: Much Prefer To Its Prequel". MidDay. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
  27. ^ Nahta, Komal (13 December 2019). "MARDAANI 2". Film Information. Film Information. Retrieved 6 February 2020.