Veteran actress Farida Jalal is proud of her association with "Balika Vadhu", the tele-serial which is nearing 1,000 episodes. She says the show is different for its social messages and it depicts the reality of the society.
The 63-year-old makes an on-and-off appearance as Badi Jiji on the show which initially dealt with the perils of child marriages and now highlights empowerment of a village belle.
"I am proud to be associated with such a show. From the very beginning, I have been a fan of the show. And seeing young Anandi get married and the social message that the show carries makes it different," Farida told IANS.
"It makes you think if this is the right thing or the wrong thing to do. Reality is put forth so beautifully through the story," she added.
Farida's character is brought into the show during peak events, and she is glad Badi Jiji facilitates the story forward.
"I never do cameos. I was a big fan of the show and that's why I agreed. When Badi Jiji comes into the house, there are many things which are going wrong and she rectifies them. I love the fact that she carries the story forward. I would love to be a part of the show always," she said.
Badi Jiji, a character shown elder to the show's Dadisa, essayed by Surekha Sikri, is much like what Farida is in real life. It is this similarity which helps her play the role easily, she says.
"I am very close to the character. She does things I believe in. If I believe in something, I will do it, if I don't, I won't do it."
Farida is glad that whether it is through her movies like "Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge" and "Kuch Kuch Hota Hai" or through her shows "Shararat" and now "Balika Vadhu", she is able to put a smile on the viewers' face.
"Even though I am so old, they think of me as a cheerful, happy-go-lucky character," she said, adding that she needs to try her hand at other roles too.
"I feel that they (audience) should let go of it (my image) sometimes too. It's like doing the same thing again and again is also quite boring," she said.