Candid chat with Donal Bisht

Donal Bisht, currently doing Colors show, Roop – Mard Ka Naya Swaroop, feels a bit sad that her portrayal of a strong, self-willed woman, does not seem to appeal to the TV watching universe. “Most housewives who watch TV are not comfortable with my character (Ishika Patel) standing up for herself. They would rather be happy to watch her 24*7 let Roop (Shashank Vyas) do the heavy lifting. Why should you fight when you have a man/husband is the common line.”

“However, it is time we change this societal mind-set step by step. Rome was not built in a day”.

“The current track, where I get married to Roop and he moves in with me, is based on Deepika Padukone’s campaign, My life my choice. Why should a woman’s motive about her lifestyle be questioned, as long as she is not wrong? Sadly, this attempt to fight for equality, to do things like men do, is also meeting resistance. Many men say freedom does not mean doing whatever you want. This is wrong, for no one questions men who cross all limits of decency. Yet, a woman who just wants to live by her mantra is looked down upon,” says Donal, who was first noticed with Sony show, Ek Deewaana Tha.

“Ishika will further face rebuke when she decides to continue her studies post marriage. This old thinking also needs to go. Why should a woman stop pursuing her career after marriage? Wedlock is not meant for women to do just housework.”

Here Donal admits that the attempt to change social norms is not getting ratings approval. “Our numbers are not bad. Having said that, as an artist, I don’t care much about TRP, which is more the headache of the channel and production house.”

“As a creative person, I am more concerned about my character and relatability. Many films that have no head or tail (Golmaal) go on to mint huge money, so this is not my game.”

What about reports that suggested that, fearing negative public perception, you want to tone down the hard scenes? “No, if you refer to the scene where I refused to go on slapping Roop – that was a creative call, for I felt that it was not needed. You can’t do things just to raise drama, which does not always work either.”

She also admitted that the story tenor has complete changed. “At first, we started with a boy (Affan Khan) who had feminine traits, which did not work. Hence, we now have a manly guy who still cares for women.”

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