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Aditi Sharma: Idea is not to provoke, but to entertain

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Aditi Sharma: Idea is not to provoke, but to entertain

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In her barely four-year-run in the industry, Aditi Sharma has managed to create a huge fan base. The actor is now gearing up for Rabb Se Hai Dua — a show that on the surface, appears to be a run-of-the-mill love triangle. But delve deeper, and you’ll find that it questions the practice of polygyny. Dressed in a chic anarkali and adorned with beautiful jewellery, Sharma sits down with mid-day to discuss the nuances of the show.

Edited excerpts from the interview.

Why did you take up a television show after experimenting with other mediums?
I found the story and my character interesting. During the lockdown, I realised that many people were struggling to find work, and here I was getting a good project that is backed by a production house I have already worked with. If I am getting a chance to work with them again, why not? I did films in the south, a web show and music videos. My job is to act, so the medium doesn’t matter.

Karanvir Sharma and Aditi Sharma

Doesn’t the story of Rabb Se Hai Dua seem similar to Ishq Subhan Allah?
I have not heard this story before. We’ve seen love triangles, but this is Dua’s [her character] perspective on life. Secondly, we are depicting a religion where [multiple marriages are] allowed. The couple is initially happy in the marriage, and then Haider [Karanvir Sharma’s character] chooses to remarry.

What is your opinion on the custom that allows a man to have a second wife, while being married to his first?
I have not grown up with the conditioning to imagine such a scenario. But to each, his own. If some customs allow it, it is not my prerogative to suggest otherwise. However, the story is told from my character’s viewpoint. The idea is not to provoke or instruct people to do the same. The show is purely made with the intention to entertain. Zaheer Shaikh is a well-read person who has written the dialogues after proper [research], and has maintained authenticity.

Religion is a sensitive topic in this country. One misstep or an extremist view can result in dire consequences. How would you react?
We are not creating something that is baseless. The Quran has a few rules, instructing the conditions of second or third marriage. It cannot be done to justify philandering behaviour. I have not personally read the Quran, but I have been told so by some of my Muslim friends. One can even marry a 70-year-old woman, if the intention is to support the person.

While polygamy exists in many cultures, polyandry is relatively uncommon. Your views?
It’s not a thought I entertain because it is beyond my understanding. This may be a practice in another culture, and people often brush off conditioning as: ‘Hamare ghar mein aise hi hota hai.’ I don’t know how to see this beyond that. I agree with the equality bit though. But there are far more important things to demand equality for, like pay parity.

Since you brought it up, is your remuneration on par with co-star Karanvir Sharma’s?
I think it is or maybe [I’m being paid] more; I am not sure [laughs]. My previous co-star [Arjit Taneja in Kaleerein] was paid very well. Both Karanvir and Arjit have more experience in the industry than me. [So even if they are paid more,] they deserve that amount. Pay parity is about equal pay between two people who are equally matched in their experience.

What do you usually discuss in your contract?
My main queries are whether I have to share a room, and whether I can get two days off in a month. I also request the working hours to be restricted to 12-13 hours a day, because I have a life beyond this.

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