Dangal actor Zaira Wasim’s decision to quit films, on grounds that her work interfered in her faith, has put her in the crosshairs of debate with Congress and NC politicos saying it was her personal choice while a Shiv Sena leader described it as a disservice to her religion.
In a detailed post on her Facebook page on Sunday, the 18-year-old Kashmiri-born actor said she had completed five years in the profession and wanted to confess that she was not “truly happy with this identity”, that is her line of work.
Among those who spoke out on her decision were Congress leader Milind Deora, National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah and Shiv Sena’s Priyanka Chaturvedi.
He also made a reference to newly married and newly elected Trinamool Congress MP Nusrat Jahan who has been criticised by hardline Muslim clerics for wearing ‘sindoor’ and the ‘mangalsutra’ and refuses to toe their line.
Taking a different tack, Shiv Sena’s Priyanka Chaturvedi said in a series of posts that while everyone had the right to practise their faith, it “should not be used sound intolerant to career choices, which it clearly isn’t”.
“This actually does a huge disservice to her religion & reinforces the narrative about Islam being intolerant.
“Hindi cinema has seen many success stories of people from the same faith, does her reason imply that all these stalwarts didn’t know their religion? Some equate her decision to that of Vinod Khanna, did he say his religion says that his choice of career blocks his faith?”, she said.
Wasim said in her post, which she later shared on other social media platforms, that she felt like she had struggled to become someone else for a very long time.
“As I had just started to explore and make sense of the things to which I dedicated my time, efforts and emotions and tried to grab hold of a new lifestyle, it was only for me to realise that though I may fit here perfectly, I do not belong here.
“This field indeed brought a lot of love, support, and applause my way, but what it also did was to lead me to a path of ignorance, as I silently and unconsciously transitioned out of ‘imaan’ (faith). While I continued to work in an environment that consistently interfered with my ‘imaan’, my relationship with my religion was threatened,” she said.
Omar Abdullah, Shah-Faesal extend support
Hours after National Award-winning actor Zaira Wasim announced her “disassociation” from the field of acting, political leaders in Jammu and Kashmir supported her decision and wished her luck.
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah tweeted:
The 18-year-old actor said she was not happy with the line of work as it interfered with her faith and religion.
In a detailed post on her Facebook page, which she later shared across all social media platforms, the Kashmiri-born “Dangal” fame star said she realised “though I may fit here perfectly, I do not belong here”.
Former bureaucrat-turned-politician Shah Faesal said he respected Wasim’s decision and wished her luck.