25 Years of CID: The Case of Famous Cameos

Team FC

Ashutosh Gowariker 

Sporting primary-coloured shirts and a head full of hair, Lagaan’s director Ashutosh Gowarikar can be spotted in many of CID’s initial episodes. The director was on the show well before much of the serial’s popular cast ‘joined the force’ and he played the role of Senior Inspector Viren.

Sriram Raghavan 

Crime forms the bedrock of Sriram Raghavan’s dark narratives and perhaps a history with CID should surprise nobody. After his education at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), the director was commissioned to make a film on the serial killer Raman Raghav – the 68-minute film which would later inspire Anurag Kashyap to make his own film, Raman Raghav 2.0 (2016) – while simultaneously working on episodes of CID.

Om Puri

Om Puri’s cameo in CID acts as a nostalgic reminder of the veteran actor’s significant Doordarshan stint. Puri’s ease with acting looks almost out of place in CID’s kitschy set-up – as Sundar, a child-kidnapper, he injects malicious humour into ordinary dialogues (“Bohot jaldi hai? [In a mighty hurry, are you?] he asks the man rapping on his PCO booth, interrupting his ransom call).

Rajat Kapoor 

Ace actor Rajat Kapoor shows up in an episode titled “One Face Two Men”, immediately bringing to mind The Viral Fever’s (TVF) disarmingly-accurate spoof of the television series – Qissa Missing Dimaag Ka – in which film critic “Rajeev NaPasand” has an evil twin. In CID’s episode, Kapoor plays Tanuj, the owner of an 8000-crore company. When an identical man is found dead, it can be easy to assume that it’s a case of twins. But, of course it isn’t and neither is it a case of plastic surgery. It’s cloning, my friends. Not one but two clones.

Ashwini Kalsekar 

Before she found popularity as a small-screen villain (and later as a comic actor), Ashwini Kalsekar played Asha, an inspector on CID’s team. Kalsekar shows up in the eleventh episode of the first season and works closely with Inspector Viren (Gowariker), but stays long after he leaves.

Shridhar Raghavan 

Shridhar Raghavan is arguably working on some of the most exciting projects of 2023. The screenwriter’s latest projects consist of the Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Pathaan, releasing at the end of this month, and Tiger 3 in the latter half of the year, with Salman Khan reprising his massively popular role. However, Raghavan’s career began with television.

Kay Kay Menon

Kay Kay Menon potentially played the most significant role a Bollywood actor has played on CID. In 2004, the actor was a part of a 111-minute single-take episode called The Inheritance, which entered The Guinness Book of World Records for the longest episode shot without a single cut. Menon reportedly agreed to be a part of the episode without even hearing the story.