“Yes my husband is a vegetarian. But we are still against the Jallikattu ban,” Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush said at her session on the third day of the Jaipur Literature Festival. Yesterday, her actor husband Dhanush had issued a statement saying that he regrets the PETA Award that was given to him in 2012 for being the ‘Hottest Vegetarian’. He said that he considers it a grave insult and praised Tamil Nadu’s youth who are protesting against the ban. Today, Aishwarya extended her support to the pro-Jallikattu protests as well, while here to talk about her memoir Standing on an Apple Box.
Once the initial murmur that followed her comment had subsided, the session saw Aishwarya talk about her father – superstar Rajinikanth, her husband and what it was to grow up in a celebrity bubble. She insisted that she had “pretty much the same childhood as everyone else”. But went on to say that “most of my childhood, my father was hardly around. He was doing seven films a year at that time. My mother would tell us to enjoy whatever time we got with him.” But she says that she still connects better with her dad. “And I still like the actor in him more than the star.”
Talking about Dhanush, she said that she had no time to know him before they got married. “My parents are conservative. They really weren’t in support of us dating before marriage. It was more like, okay he’s good for you, so get married to him. There was no courtship period.” But, she said, she’s grateful that it all turned out well for them. “My husband encouraged me to stand on my own, gave me the nudge to do what I wanted – either singing or directing films,” she added. About the changing role of women in the film industry, Aishwarya pointed out that they are no longer just actresses, “Today, we’re in every field in cinema, from editors to cinematographers to directors.”
Aishwarya also talked about social media and how it was a huge challenge to bring up children in this digital age. “You can’t not allow anything today,” she said. “Everything is available on the Internet. If I try to keep them from being informed about something, they’ll simply Google it or get to know from Facebook. So the best thing to do is to not stop them from something but to make them understand it.” Social media has also put a lot of pressure on celebrity kids to be or behave a certain way, she said. “They’re expected to not go wrong. Now that’s a little impossible for children, no?”
Watch: Live with Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush
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