Tea vendor turns down film talk

ISLAMABAD – An 18-year-old tea vendor who became Pakistan’s hottest new celebrity when his photo went viral on the Internet says he has no plans for an acting career — though he is flattered by the attention.

Arshad Khan (pictured)became an overnight sensation this week when a photographer’s Instagram shot of him working at his tea stall was shared tens of thousands of times.

“It was all very baffling,” said Mr Khan, who has blue-green eyes, a wiry physique and a trim moustache.

Mr Khan is an ethnic Pashtun, a people living mostly in Pakistan and Afghanistan who sometimes have light skin and eyes, a testament to the region’s history as a cultural crossroads of trade, conquering armies and colonialism.

Local news outlets have reported offers of modelling contracts and even a possible film career for Mr Khan, but he says he’s not interested.

“I have not thought about (acting in) movies, because it’s not been done by anyone in our family,” he said.

Acting in films, he said “is not honourable work. Pashtuns always look for work that is honourable”.

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