(written from a Production point of view)
Desai was born in Bombay, India and started his acting career in the 1970s in projects such as the short film Item 72-D: The Adventures of Spa and Fon (1970), the crime drama Ginger (1971, with Tracey Walter), the fantasy film Phantom of the Paradise (1974, with Gerrit Graham), the drama Short Eyes (1977, with Bruce Davison and Mark Margolis), and the comedy Imposters (1979).
Throughout the 1980s he appeared in episodes of St. Elsewhere (1985, with Norman Lloyd, Ed Begley, Jr., Christina Pickles, and Keone Young), Hill Street Blues (1985, with James B. Sikking, Barbara Bosson, Gene Dynarski, Stephen Macht, and Joseph Ruskin), Hunter (1985, with Bruce Davison, Jonathan Banks, and Patti Tippo), The A-Team (1986, with Dwight Schultz and Rosalind Chao), Sledge Hammer! (1986, with Brenda Strong and Leslie Morris), and Moonlighting (1988, with Jack Blessing and Marcelo Tubert). He also appeared in the mystery film Q (1982), the science fiction film Project X (1987, with William Sadler, Robin Gammell, Daniel Roebuck, Ward Costello, Dick Miller, Randal Patrick, and Bob Minor), and the comedy A Sinful Life (1989, with Dennis Christopher and Mark Rolston).
In the 1990s, Desai had supporting roles in the action sequel Maniac Cop 2 (1990, with Clarence Williams III, Charles Napier, Andrew Hill Newman, Roger Aaron Brown, Charlie Croughwell, and Marco Rodriguez), the television movie Before the Storm (1991, with Salome Jens and John Rhys-Davies), the drama Thelma & Louise (1991, with Christopher McDonald and Timothy Carhart), the drama Eddie Presley (1992, with Daniel Roebuck, Lawrence Tierney, and Buddy Daniels Friedman), the fantasy comedy Toys (1992), the television thriller A Kiss Goodnight (1994, with Brett Cullen, Mark Ginther, Mark Moses, Barbara J. Tarbuck, and Lawrence Tierney), the comedy Il silenzio dei prosciutti (1994), the comedy Clifford (1994, with Jennifer Nash and Richard Fancy), the science fiction film Barb Wire (1996, with Ron Balicki, Clint Howard, Diana Lee Inosanto, Henry Kingi, Sr., Tommy "Tiny" Lister, Jr., Peewee Piemonte, Lou Simon, Patti Tippo, and Nicholas Worth), John Carpenter's science fiction film Escape from L.A. (1996, with Michelle Forbes, Jeff Imada, Leland Orser, James Lew, and Nick Danger), the fantasy sequel The Crow: City of Angels (1996, with Iggy Pop), the action film Street Corner Justice (1996, with Tommy "Tiny" Lister, Jr., Clint Howard, Max Daniels, and Jeff Cadiente), the comedy Denial (1999, with Jason Alexander, Nicholas Worth, Jack R. Orend, and Steve Schirripa), the romance Forces of Nature (1999, with Ronny Cox, Jack Kehler, George D. Wallace, Anne Haney, Bert Remsen, and Bill Erwin), and the drama For Love of the Game (1999, with Bill E. Rogers, Tracy Middendorf, Michael Papajohn, and Daniel Dae Kim).
Desai's further television credits include episodes of thirtysomething (1990), Adam 12 (1990, with Peter Parros and Tony Rizzoli), Hollywood Beat, Murder One (1996, with Daniel Benzali, John Fleck, Kevin Tighe, Barbara Bosson, Roy Brocksmith, James Avery, David Zabel, Ned Vaughn, Deborah May, Maury Ginsberg, Adam Scott, and Spencer Garrett), ER (1994 and 1996, with Christine Harnos, Scott Jaeck, Julianna McCarthy, Michael Cavanaugh, Christine Healy, Liz Vassey, Scott Lincoln, Miguel Ferrer, Kirsten Dunst, Lily Mariye, and Ellen Wheeler), and Martin (1997, with John Cothran, Jr. and Judyann Elder).
Since 2000, Desai had guest roles in The District (2002, with Roger Aaron Brown and Deborah Strang), Curb Your Enthusiasm (2001-2002, with Paul Dooley, Don Stark, and Paul Willson), NYPD Blue (2003, with Lori Petty), Girlfriends (2004, with Golden Brooks), Wanted (2005, with Al Rodrigo), It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2007), Ugly Betty (2007, with Alan Dale, Tony Plana, and Vanessa Williams), Hung (2009), and Archer (2009, with George Coe and Keith Szarabajka).
Further film work includes the drama Everything Put Together (2000, with Matt Malloy, Alan Ruck, Tom McCleister, and Judy Geeson), the drama Zoe (2001), the drama Night at the Golden Eagle (2001, with Vinny Argiro), the short comedy The Mexican Dream (2003), the drama The Nickel Children (2005, with John Billingsley), the drama Midnight Clear (2006, with K Callan, Richard Fancy, Richard Riehle, Wren T. Brown, Wayne Grace, and Michael Krawic), the action comedy Delta Farce (2007, with Michael Edward Rose, Glenn Morshower, Michael Papajohn, Ed O'Ross, and Jimmy Ortega), the horror comedy You're So Dead (2007, with Nikki Flux and Robert Miano), the television comedy Starting Under (2008), the drama The Seekers (2008, with Josh Cruze, Joseph Culp, and Ronald F. Hoiseck), the short film The Museum (2008), the horror thriller No Man's Land: The Rise of Reeker (2008, with Robert Pine), the short film Tony (2008, with Amy Benedict and Mike Hagerty), the horror comedy How to Be a Serial Killer (2008, with Jack Donner), the comedy Bob Funk (2009, with Ron Canada, Tania Gunadi, Tommy Hinkley, and Stephen Root), and the television comedy Big Red (2009).
More recently, Desai had a recurring role as Carlos in the comedy series Men of a Certain Age (2009-2011, starring Scott Bakula) and featured parts in the comedy A Thousand Words (2012, with Matt Winston) and the action comedy Here Comes the Boom (2012, with Reggie Lee).