Ramanuj Sharma, popularly known as Anuj Sharma, is an Indian film, stage and television personality. He is known for his multifarious talents in directing, acting, singing and stage shows compering. He was honoured by the Government of India, in 2014, by having bestowed upon him the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award, for his services to the field of arts. Ramanuj Sharma is the first film personality from Chhattisgarh to receive the Padma Shri award.
Ramanuj Sharma, generally considered as the first superstar of Chhattisgarhi films, was born on 15 May 1976, to Teken Lal Sharma and Dehuti Sharma, at Bhatapara in Raipur in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh. He did his schooling at a local school in Bhatapara and, later, secured a Master’s degree in History from the Pandit Ravishankar Shukla University, Raipur.
Anuj Sharma is married to Dr. Smita Sharma and the couple lives at Sant Kabir Nagar in Raipur and soon he is going to shift his new home in Labhandi Raipur
Anuj Sharma started acting and singing at the age of ten. After a brief stint as the marketing executive at Godrej, Sharma made his debut in the 2000 film, Mor Chhaihan Bhuiyan, considered to be the first of the modern era of Chhattisgarhi film history, which was till then at a nascent stage; the first of the Chhattisgarhi films was made only in 1965 and the second one in 1971. The film became a huge commercial success, running for 27 consecutive weeks at one cinema, eclipsing the then record for consecutive shows. The film was screened at two cinemas for a week at eight shows a day, a record reported to be standing till now.
The success of the debut film elevated Anuj to stardom which saw him making eight releases a year and 4 silver jubilee hits, the only lead actor to do so in Chhattisgarhi films. The career, which featured successful movies like Maya, Mr Tetkuram. and Mohu Diwana Tuhu Diwani, also saw him getting the best actor award four times. The prolificacy of his acting career also returned two of his films being released on the same day. Sharma’s films have been dubbed into many other languages such as Sambalpuri, Jharkhandi, Bundelkhandi, Gujarati, and Bhojpuri. He has also acted in a number of Bhojpuri films.
Anuj Sharma has active presence on stage and television, with more than 300 stage shows in various parts of central India. He is also associated with UNICEF for the campaigns in Chhattisgarh. Anuj has also performed as radio jockey in the National FM channel and was the first Chhattisgarhi compere. He has compered around 125 television shows so far. Anuj has also made advertisement and promotion films for the Chhattisgarh Tourism Board and for other commercial institutions as well.
A Chhattisgarhi folk singer by practice, Sharma is reported to be at ease singing all styles of Chhattisgarhi folk songs. He has over 100 video albums, has sung over 200 film and folk songs, and has composed music for 10 audio albums