As an actor I am open to all good roles that come my way: Maleeka R Ghai
Rashmi Sharma Productions’ Desh Ki Beti Nandini (DKBN), on Sony Entertainment Television, has opened doors for a lot of new actors. Amidst the crop, stands noted actor Maleeka R Ghai for whom this show is a comeback vehicle.
The lady who plays the bubbly mother of Nandini has been in the industry for 15 long years. And in a conversation with , she narrates her experiences.
Says Maleeka, “I did my first film Mukka with Puneet Issar and Tinu Anand, but sadly it did not see the light of the day. I later did Chor Ke Piche Chor opposite Jeetendra and soon was flooded with offers. People started asking me as to why I was only doing negative roles. But then at such a young age you are only enthusiastic about doing good work, isn’t it?”
“I had never set goals and was also not interested on ‘friendly offers’ by directors and producers to bag lead roles. Since I was in the industry to work, I just focused on the same. After that I did Raja Ki Aayegi Baraat in which I played Rani Mukerji’s friend and Mere Sapno Ki Raani which was a big project in which I played Sanjay Kapoor’s sister,” she adds.
“I then tried my hand at comedy and did two films opposite Johnny Lever (Hum To Mohabbat Karega and Heeralal Pannalal). But soon I realised that Johnny was a big name in the industry and I could never get a good chance to stand up with him,” she informs.
Later Maleeka made a shift to television when Zee TV was launched and did her first project with Rajev Paul. “With a dearth of good actors in the industry, there was lot of work but the industry wasn’t that big. And since I moved in from films and was mature as an actor, I realised that there was no growth in my career. This is when I also moved towards theatre where I learnt a lot. From 2000-2002, I did five shows on popular GECs operating then. One day, I just moved towards spirituality and left all these worldly pleasures aside,” she reveals.
“I trained myself in Reiki (she is a grandmaster), yoga, Osho, Art of Living and meditation. The awakening through this made me a much better person and I was totally transformed. From being snobbish and egoistic, I became a caring, loving and receptive person. I also got into music and have worked with popular music directors and also assisted in writing lyrics of many projects. Many of my lyrics have been used in songs sung by Roop Kumar Rathod while some have been used in a special episode in the show Jhansi Ki Rani,” Maleeka observes.
A multi-talented woman Maleeka is for sure. Since she started missing her first love, that is acting, she decided to come back to TV after a gap of 10 years.
“I realised that there have been huge changes in the industry in terms of technique and content. I did not know how I would cope up, so I started off with episodics in shows like CID, Savdhan India and Shapath. And then Balika Vadhu and Punar Vivah happened. I must say God has been kind to me. And with DKBN, I am all set for my second term in the industry,” she maintains.
Talking about her character in the show, Maleeka avers, “Aanchal is a very sweet character who is innocent. She loves her children and is very close to her family. She has that ‘fun element’ in her that makes the character very lovable. I was apprehensive of the fact that at 32, I will be playing a mother but then as an actor I am open to all good roles that come my way. So here I am.”
As she signs off, Maleeka says she wants to be remembered as a good actor- the same wish she had in her heart when she had walked into the industry years ago.
With such talent and dedication, sky is the limit for you, Maleeka!!!