Actress Vani Tripathi turns to politics

By Shweta Thakur, IANS

New Delhi : Popular television actress Vani Tripathi has taken to politics seriously and has become the national secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) youth wing. The TV star believes she had the "courage" to join the political system instead of just being a critic.

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"Most of us stand at the periphery and criticise the system. It is easy to become a critic but I have the courage to join the system," Vani told IANS.

Vani is known for her performances in serials like "Ehsaas" on national broadcaster Doordarshan and "Choti Maa" on Zee TV.

The main aim behind donning the new mantle in the BJP, according to Vani, is to work for the betterment of women and children.

"Position brings responsibility and an opportunity to connect to more people, especially the youth. Now I want to work for young women and children also.

"Women in our society either don't get a chance to express themselves or they don't come forward. Children are the future of the country. So I want to be a part of the policy making and work for them," she added.

Vani joined the BJP in 2004. She revealed that former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's persona was the driving force behind her joining the BJP instead of any other political party.

"For me Vajpayee was a reason alluring enough to join the BJP."

Vani has also essayed an unconventional role of a Muslim prostitute in Shrirang Dhawale's film "Dil Se Pooch… Kidhar Jaana Hai", which was released in December 2006.

It was a poignant tale of two friends separated during the Mumbai riots. And when they meet several years later – one is a prostitute and the other turns out to be a cop.

The actress has been active in the theatre circuit too, with nearly 150 plays to her credit.

Model, animal rights activist, theatre artist, wildlife photographer, singer and now a politician – Vani surely has her finger in many pies.

But she said she would continue acting and win hearts of audiences, despite joining politics.

"I will continue with my acting career but I will definitely become a little choosy about my projects."

The actress, who has also done supporting roles in films like "Chalte Chalte" and "Dushman", felt actors who turn politicians certainly have a higher popularity quotient.

"As far as popularity is concerned, actors-turned-politicians get more love and adulation of the public. However, at the same time they are socially more accountable.

"Actors like Hema Malini, Vinod Khanna, Shatrughan Sinha and Smriti Irani are all from the glamour world and are doing good work as politicians too," she said.