I don't even know the 'P' of politics: Jeetendra
For Jeetendra, who started life in a tenement here, success was an arduous climb up the ladder.
But, he says today, it is his daughter Ektaa Kapoor who has undergone the real struggle.
Jeetendra takes pride in his children -- Ektaa, head honcho of Balaji Telefilms, India's number one television production house, and Tusshar, a budding actor.
Known as the jumping jack of Bollywood, he spoke to IANS in an interview at his posh bungalow in Mumbai. Excerpts:
Q: Tell us about your recent interest in politics?
A: I don't think I'm meant for politics and don't even know the "P" of it. I have no aspirations to enter active politics. I do not want to be a legislator or minister in future. But I strongly believe that people over the years have given me their love and respect, and I feel responsible to show them the right people who can run our country well.
The reason why we have so many stars campaigning for politics is that when we senior artistes go to speak to people, they at least listen to some extent. I like to make a link with the right people who can run our country and at the same time keep a check so that they deliver what they promised.
Q: Why only support the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)?
A: I'm a big fan of (Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee) Ataljee, (Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani) Advanijee and (Venkaiah Naidu) Venkaihjee. I think they have done a good job and that's why I support them and will also support other parties where I feel people are good and can run the government well.
Q: Many veteran actors have tried their hands at direction; don't you have any plans to direct any films?
A: To become a hero is simple but to direct a film is far more challenging work. I don't know much of direction even after acting in so many movies. In fact, I still don't understand some simple things.
I have acted in more than 200 films but when I see today's youngsters, I feel as if I have just been cutting grass all these years!
Q: Are you referring to your daughter Ektaa?
A: We started off from the streets with very little money but my children got all the pleasures of life. In spite of a lavish life though, Ektaa has struggled and lived a very tough life. She has slogged with umpteen meetings with various channels to get her serials approved.
We have a basement in our house that is actually a garage. She has operated from this very garage for more than six years.
Mind you she didn't have to do all this and the struggle was not needed because we were well to do. They could have lived a comfortable life. With us it was a different situation, as struggle was needed to earn enough to feed ourselves.
Q: Any plans for acting?
A: There you go again, why do you want me to dye my hair so many times!