Rani Mukerji

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Rani Mukerji: 'Aamir and SRK respect women'

By HT

New Delhi, Aug. 26 -- This HT City Stars in the City was a little different from others. Besides the winners of our contest, we also had three police officers in the house, who met actor Rani Mukerji. The actor spoke about her film, Mardaani, in an engaging chat with Sonal Kalra, National Editor (Entertainment & Lifestyle), Hindustan Times.

We heard you were a tomboy while growing up. Is that true?

I wasn't a tomboy, but I always had this attitude in me that boys in my school, even those who had a crush on me, used to maintain a distance. They'd be like 'Zara sambhal ke is se.' When I started working, I had the opportunity to romance Aamir (Khan, actor) and Shah Rukh (Khan, actor) and I was pretty happy with that. They respect women a lot. I've always received a lot of respect from all the people I've worked with.

Ajay Devgn and Salman have become the quintessential reel-life cops. Are you all set to beat the men at their game?

I'd like to say that women are the best, so I will be better. I did my research and actually met female cops. I had to take special permission to meet the crime branch unit in Bombay. They helped us a lot. I went to the units in Mumbai, which I never knew even existed, as they are all undercover. Meeting them made me look at cops in a different light. They are working for us every day tirelessly, fighting battles every day to make us feel secure. We, as citizens, have a very prejudiced way of looking (at things); when we think of a police officer, we always have a male cop in our head. Hopefully, through Mardaani, people will see how brave our female cops are.

What are your real-life mardaani moments?

I am a mardaani since childhood. I have slapped and hit lots of people. So, I did not hesitate at all while playing the role. I didn't find it tough. I felt that I should punch and kick more people. My only expectation from this film is that women should recognise their strength and awaken it. There is a question mark on the security of women. We have to empower ourselves. Please enroll yourself in a martial arts class, I did at 36. It's never too late. Encourage your children to take up these lessons at the age of three, they will be like Bruce Lee by the time they grow up. Make your children self-sufficient, so that men tie us rakhis!

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