Indian Express

Won’t campaign for any candidate but Panag a good friend: Mandira

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Mandira Bedi in Ludhiana on Thursday. (Gurmeet Singh) Mandira Bedi in Ludhiana on Thursday. (Gurmeet Singh)

Actor and television host Mandira Bedi on Thursday ruled out possibility of campaigning for any particular party or candidate in the ongoing Lok Sabha polls.

Bedi was in the city to launch her designer sari collection which marks her entry as a fashion designer. Talking to Newsline, Bedi said, “I am definitely going to vote in these elections as I always do. But there is no question of campaigning for a particular party or a candidate.”

However, she said that “her friendship with Chandigarh AAP candidate Gul Panag is very strong”. “Gul is a very good friend of mine. Because of striking similarity between our looks and appearance, people sometimes mistake me as Gul and vice-versa,” said Bedi.

Asked about her next projects as an actor, she said that at present, there were no plans for any serials. “I started with Shanti, which is still going strong and continues to live in the hearts of people. It presented woman power in the most dynamic way on screen and then I took up Kyunki Saas Bha Kabhi Bahu Thi, which got me popularity overnight. But later I realised daily family dramas are not my cup of tea. Now I won’t be taking up any regular dramas,” she said.

She also said that “only if a character as strong and different as ‘24’ comes up, she is ready to take that”. “24 gave me an opportunity to expand my talent. It was a short series but left an impact and that is the kind of role I would prefer now,” she added.

Landing in controversies either because of her sari with national flag or tattoo on Sikhism, Bedi claimed that “it does not bother her”. “I am glad that I got flak for wearing saris in World Cup 2003. That marked beginning of my love with the most beautiful attire women can wear. And now I am even designing them,” she said. “For me, sari and cricket go together, doesn’t matter what people say.”

On her ‘selfie’ posted on Twitter with Shah Rukh Khan, she said, “It was ridiculous terming it copying Hollywood. Selfie is nobody’s trademark and it is a moment. We were clicking them even before word selfie was coined.”

She added that her husband Raj Kausal was the inspiration behind her sari designing venture which had been on for the past six months. She added that the range of saris had been kept from Rs 13,000 to 25,000.

She will be next seen judging comedy show ‘Gangs of Hassipur’ on television.

On picking Ludhiana as first destination for launching her collection, she said, “Women of Ludhiana have great dressing sense and it is the commercial capital of Punjab which makes it an obvious choice.”

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