By: Upala KBR, Mid-Day
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Preeti Jain has acted in an AIDS film, titled Shock - For Free. The actress, who was in the news for having filed a rape case against director Madhur Bhandarkar and then allegedly hired a contract killer to murder Bhandarkar, has turned a social activist. She's been giving fiery speeches for the emancipation of women.
What's Shock about?
It's a five-minute film to create awareness about AIDS. Producer-director Hashim Khan Varsi approached me asking if I would be interested in doing something constructive for the society and I agreed. We have to combat AIDS together and awareness and prevention are the first steps. The story is about a man (Hemant Pandey) taking shelter from the rain in a room where he finds me bitterly crying. He takes advantage of me sexually and later asks me why I was crying. I reply that it was because I have AIDS.
When did you turn into a social activist?
I have always harboured the ambition that if I become famous I should do something good for society. That's our duty, to give back to society what it has given us. I do plenty of social work for free. I am a staunch feminist who believes in the rights of women. I have been invited by lot of women's organisations and have given speeches against sexual and domestic violence against women.
What's happening on the personal front?
On my birthday on March 9 last year, I decided to gift myself a one-bedroom flat in Versova. My father and I live there. I don't have a boyfriend. Right now, my career is more important than a man.
Have you forgiven and forgotten about Madhur Bhandarkar?
It's not a question of forgetting or forgiving. Justice means punishing somebody for doing something wrong and that means going to the police. If a girl from a conservative society goes to the police, obviously something phenomenally wrong has happened. One day the truth will come out. I don't know what's happening to the case. Court cases take time.
And what about the professional front?
Apart from doing Deepa Ki Tarannum (a film inspired by bar dancer Tarannum Shaikh's life), I am also doing a Bhojpuri film called Nirahua Datal Rahe with Dinesh Lal Yadav.