After winning accolades for her roles in Dev D, Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster, Paan Singh Tomar, actress Mahie Gill, says that she is happy that she is a part of movies of such genre which are now commercially successful. Here, she speaks to Ambreen Zaidi
AZ: Women all across the world are going through what can be termed as one of the worst times, what do you have to say about it?
MG: I believe, women should be independent especially financially. I am a fiercely independent girl. I guess I am a lucky one. All credit goes to my parents, who never differentiated between me and my brothers. So, everything starts from home, the values you give to your children will define their future and how they behave.
AZ: So you think home is where it all starts?
MG: Yes, parents need to inculcate the right values both in sons and daughters. They need to teach their daughters how to be bold, fearless and independent and most importantly boys need to be taught to respect women. Not that the girls need to be really powerful, powerful in a dignified way. I also very strongly feel that men, whether it is a husband, brother, father, boyfriend, they should always stand by their woman. High time that women in our country get their due.
AZ: A large section of our society is also blaming our movies esp the rise in item numbers, what is your take on this?
MG: I don?t think item numbers or movies have any role to play. The atrocities against women, the heinous crimes, like in the case of Nirbhaya, are committed by men who suffer from mental disease. People are raping even a 4 month old child. It?s a sickness and there has to be a strict law against it. A harsh punishment or castration will develop a fear factor and there will be definite decrease in such crimes. But for this our government and judiciary needs to act fast. But the best part is that because of the media, people are coming out of their homes and speaking about these crimes. Earlier it used to be a taboo; they used to hush it up. This time, we saw a lot of men protesting; that I think is a very good sign.
AZ: What else do you think we as aware citizens should/can do?
MG: Education is very very important, lots of patience and family support. The world is ever expanding and is full of opportunities. But even then if you feel you have not been able to achieve what you had set out to achieve, don?t be ashamed. Go back to your parents, don?t worry about the society. And parents should also support their child and guide them.
AZ: How did you, a girl from a small town like Chandigarh, make it so big in Bollywood?
MG: It?s all because of the upbringing of my parents, who taught me to be what I want to be and excel in whatever I do. It?s been a very long time since I am staying away from them, but the values they gave me, make me the person I am today. I feel nice when my brothers look upto me for advice.
AZ: Was it your dream to be an actress?
MG: No, I wanted to join Army, my grandfather was in the army, I am a NCC certificate holder and am a very good shooter too. But God had other plans I guess. I am happy the way life has turned out to be. I now want to play glamorous roles and try my hand at different genres.
AZ: How was it working with a seasoned actor like Irrfan Khan?
MG: Oh!! Irrfan is a great actor, makes you feel very comfortable, he is one of the finest actors we have. And the best part is that with actors like Irrfan, who automatically tend to deliver your best. Working with him has been a mind blowing experience.
AZ: Lastly, your message to your fans.
MG: My message first of all is to my female fans, they should be mentally strong and NOT be the BECHARIS, and they are not! They should know how to handle a tricky situation with dignity. And to all my fans I would just say respect women and keep watching my movies and showering your love, always.