In Mujhse Kuchh Kehti...Yeh Khamoshiyaan we already have a bank of 20 episodes. Also in each show I shoot for about 10 to 12 days. In both the shows I play the mom of a grown up daughter. In Mujhse Kuchh Kehti...Yeh Khamoshiyaan I live in London- my character Ashwini Bhonsle both traditional and modern. In Junoon - Aisi Nafrat, toh Kaisa Ishq I am a Delhite who is a college professor, on this show my daughter is more like a mom to me.
How was it to shoot in London for Mujhse Kuchh Kehti...Yeh Khamoshiyaan?
I didn't go to London. Only Mohit Sehgal and Mrinal Thakur went to London for four to five days to shoot the London scenes.
Viewers are saying that both these shows are somewhat similar in the sense that both are visiting an unknown rural and rugged territory…..
I do agree that the set up of both the shows are quite similar. But the heroine's motives to visit the rugged territory are totally different. In Mujhse Kuchh Kehti...Yeh Khamoshiyaan the girl will be finding out about her ancestors. In Junoon - Aisi Nafrat, toh Kaisa Ishq she wishes to re-unite her separated parents.
You are too young to play the mother of a grown up daughter….
Well, this happens only in India. In reality I have a five year old son. However I am quite okay with this. After all as an actress you need to do various kinds of roles. Fresh faces are preferred for the role of the heroine. However mothers of grownup daughters in Indian television are not supposed to look elderly.
Your character Sudha Singh in Junoon - Aisi Nafrat, toh Kaisa Ishq is still pining over her estranged husband. Do you think it's regressive to show Indian women still moping over lost love when they should be moving on with life?
No, I don't think it is regressive. Some women in India are still traditional in their mindsets despite being modern. It is okay if she wishes to relive her husband's memories despite being separated from him. It is not that my character Sudha Singh hasn't moved on in life though. However she still wants to follow the custom of fasting on Karva Chaut for her husband. The show is just showing a mirror image of what happens in Indian society. Also sometimes regressive behavior is shown in serials not because the creatives support it but because they want to show that if a person behaves in a certain way, this will be the consequence.
What do you watch on TV?
I don't watch much TV. If I watch TV it is just the movie channels, food channels and the news. Also I try my best to ensure that my five year old son doesn't get addicted to the idiot box which is a plug in drug.
You are a veteran in the TV industry. Do you think Indian TV has changed for the better or worse?
TV is more of a money making venture nowadays. There is more emphasis of quantity and delivering fast rather than quality. However there are still good shows like that of Balika Vadhu and Devon Ke Dev. Mahadev. When I joined the industry, Indian TV was on par with Star World. Our contemporary shows hardly have a bank. However we did have a bank for Sasural Genda Phool which is why we could experiment on the show. Also it upsets me that nowadays actresses just want to look pretty on screen instead of looking believable.
What is your message to your fans?
Please watch eye opening good shows on TV. Don't eat while watching as you won't be able to eat properly if you do so. Minimize TV watching hours as you need to be more active than passive.
Author and Reporter: Pallavi Bhattacharya