Soha Ali Khan talks about her visits to Pataudi Palace, her memories, and how she “feels closer” to her father, Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi.
After a three-year hiatus, actor Soha Ali Khan is back on screen with Kaun Banegi Sikharwati. In the series, she appears alongside Naseeruddin Shah, Lara Dutta, Anya Singh, and Kritika Kamra. She told indianexpress.com about the series, “I wasn’t sure of the dynamics of working with three other women in the same frame.” Her experience, however, was “relaxed and chilled out” because all of her female co-stars were “secure and confident in their personalities,” she said.
Soha plays Gayatri, and Lara plays Devyani, Gayatri’s older sister. “Lara has had a lot of success and has a lot of experience, but she doesn’t have any airs about her. In fact, if we needed something on set, we’d fire the gun from her shoulder, and she’d get a lot of things done for us,” Soha said of Lara, adding that working with her, Kritika, and Anya was “a pleasant experience.” Kamini and Uma are played by Kritika and Anya, respectively.
Gayatri, played by Soha, is a yogini in the series. Unlike Gayatri, the actor describes herself as “a creature of comfortable possessions.” As the conversation progressed, we asked Soha if it was easy for her to play Gayatri because she comes from a royal family. “I’m trying really hard to think of how it could help me, but I’m having trouble because I’m not sure what people expect us to do when we go to our palaces…” she joked.
“Whenever I go to Pataudi, I bring my Mumbai cook with me.” He refers to me as Didi here and Soha Bia there. He addresses Kunal as bhaiyya, and Mia is present. As a result, when you enter Pataudi, things change. I don’t know much other than having an innate sense of sophistication. The world appeals to me (of Shikharwati). I felt at ease in a palace, dressed up in beautiful gowns and exuding the airs and graces that a princess should exude. “It wasn’t an alien world to me,” Soha explained, adding that she is also a part of the modern world in her personal life. “I’m caught in the middle of two worlds.” A world that is a little ancient and a world that is modern exist side by side. Those things are attractive in Pataudi, but not in Mumbai. As a result, you must adjust to the time and place. That is the evolutionary rule.”
We asked her to tell us about her favourite memories of Pataudi because she mentioned it. Pataudi Palace, according to the actor, is a place where she relaxes. “Just going there and looking at the architecture, landscapes, and gardens my mother has created is relaxing.” “You just go there, take a deep breath, and you feel unburdened in so many ways,” Soha expressed after the hustle and bustle, insecurities, and competitiveness of city life in Mumbai.
Pataudi, on the other hand, is more than just a location for her. It’s a way for her to remember her father, her childhood, and to find inner peace. “I simply enjoy the open spaces and greenery.” When I’m there, I get a sense of being closer to my father. I visit his grave and pay my respects to him. It is his residence. So there’s a link there as well. Growing up, I have so many memories. I recall visiting when there was no electricity and we were children. We used to sleep under the macchardani trees outside (mosquito net). We now have air conditioning, but there was no such thing as air conditioning or mobile phones back then. As a result, there was a complete cutoff. I recall being ecstatic when I first saw a fax machine. Even the first air conditioner. It now has some modern conveniences. “However, it retains an old world charm,” she explained.
“We play cricket and farm organically.” Soha’s 4-year-old daughter, Inaaya, also visits and plants something. Picks up all the potatoes, carrots, and other vegetables. We make a salad with cucumbers and carrots that she has grown and harvested herself. There are peacocks and adopted dogs, as well as snakes on occasion… “It’s like being in the middle of nature,” she concluded.
From January 7, Kaun Banegi Sikharwati will be available on ZEE5. Naseeruddin Shah and Raghubir Yadav also star in the show.