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Debutante Pushpa Joshi from Raid tells Suranjana Biswas that she has a long way to go after her first acting gig at the young age of 85

It is uplifting to see someone debut at the age of 85. You are truly an inspiration.

Jiyo, magar zinda dili se jiyo! I believe that whatever has to happen will happen. I will keep working till I can. Kaam karte karte chale jayen upar toh aur achcha!

What was your first reaction when you were offered the film?

I was thrilled to get this opportunity at this age. I had no clue that life would take a turn like this. I am so thankful to the filmmakers for considering me for this role. I was absolutely elated to work with such big stars in the film. I still cannot get over it. It was a lot to shoot but the team took very good care of me.

What was the brief given to you?

They called me for an audition after they decided to offer me the role. They made me practice the lines from the script and  gave me the brief about the character at that time. They told me I had to play the role of a grandmother who is afflicted with Alzheimer’s. Also, my character is addicted to smoking hukkah.

Was your family supportive of your decision?

I was very elated to tell my grandchildren about the role. Initially, I was apprehensive to do it; I thought, what if I get Alzheimer’s in real life! (Laughs) My family said nothing of that sort would happen and encouraged me to do it. It was their support and love that has brought me here.

What was it like working with Ajay Devgn and the others in the film?

I loved the experience of working with Ajay Devgn. Everybody was so warm and cordial. I have a small scene with Ajay Devgn where I ask him to get me coal for my hukkah. Although he is a superstar, he made me feel very comfortable in front of the camera and that helped me deliver my lines without any difficulty.

The film is doing very well at the box office. How does it make you feel?

I am very grateful to the audience for watching our film and showering us with so much love. When people look at me now, they smile and I tend to smile back. When I walk past people, I hear them whisper, “Dadi, Dadi.” I hope and pray to the Almighty that the film sees more success and continues its run at the box office. I hope the film becomes a super hit.

What are your upcoming projects?

I was offered a role in Gully Boy but I had to give up on it as I was down with a fever. I was also offered a role in Batti Gul Meter Chalu but I could not travel for it.

Byline – Suranjana Biswas

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