Opportunities Today :- November 2004 Issue

Interview of  Saina Bedi

 

A TALK WITH YOUNG ACTIVIST SAINA BEDI

SAINA BEDI, though easily identifiable as Dr. Kiran Bedi's daughter has carved a niche for herself as a social activist and has also produced her own serial “GALTI KISKI” or “WHAT WENT WRONG” on Doordarshan - National Network. 

 

Tell us about your present activities and how it all began.
My life has been an amazing journey. I have been a very low profile person till the age of almost 23. I wasn't very active socially, more into myself because I developed leukoderma at the age of thirteen and I was more of an introvert. Then I met Gopal the person who I am currently married to. He played a very integral role in my life; he really motivated me and brought the best out of me. But yes I did all the work myself. As things started growing, I started getting involved with my mother's NGO, that is the "India Vision Foundation" in the capacity of Director-Projects. We started an award for children for innovation, invention and discovery. From there one thing led to the other and I also created my company called Pavitrata Creations Pvt.Ltd.- through that I made a serial called “GALTI KISKI HAI” which is based on my mother's work, her book. It was basically to sensitize the human mind towards pain. I was not in anyway trying to create a revolution or claim that overnight things are going to change for the people by this serial. Just to show the world that there is another side to the picture too. Be grateful for what God has given you, there are so many people who have nothing. At present I have created my own NGO which is again called Pavitrata Foundation. I have started a project called Parva (to care). Anybody can walk into my office and tell me I am in trouble and I need help. Then I sit and analyse what kind of help that person needs - whether it is legal help, counselling, with some ministry or police. So I am like a bridge between that person and all the agencies, because I personally love to fight for the underdogs.


Your mother is a great personality. What areas of her work and activities have inspired you?
The thing that inspired me most in her is that she is very courageous, she is dynamic and she does what she feels is right. It's her conscience, she's only answerable to her conscience. She does what she feels is right, hell with the world, hell with the controversy. And that's one thing that I have completely taken from her, because I just go ahead and do what I feel is right.


Do you feel her great achievements and status overshadow you at times?
No way. I am very happy walking in the shadow of my mother. There is no competition between mother and daughter. She has given me so much, where is the scope for competition? There is no question of overshadowing, in the sense that some people would say ' I need to break away from her', but not me, she lives her own life, I live my own. Of course I am inspired by her courage and discipline. But at the end of the day she cannot be my idol, she's my mother.


What are the difficulties you encounter being Kiran Bedi's daughter?
All my advantages are because of being Kiran Bedi's daughter and the things that I have had to go through is also because I am Kiran Bedi's daughter. Its not easy being her daughter, it's actually very tough. People are eyeing you all the time in a different way, they are full of expectations and they expect you to behave in a certain manner. But I also think it is my biggest blessing being her daughter for one simple reason - the minute people say she is Kiran Bedi's daughter it means instant honesty, courage and integrity. The tough part is it is doubly difficult to prove yourself as a person and if you are not up to the mark you are thrown out and that is where I am trying to create my identity. Coming back to the work I do, my foundation fights for the underdogs who have no one. 


Since you interact with a lot of people what is your opinion of the youth of today, where they are and what they should do?
The youth is definitely progressing, there is a big change. But there is one thing that I feel, there is a lot of 'I' and 'me' in everything that they do.They are all getting very self-centered, which is not right. A part of the day or a part of your life has to include , ' what am I doing? What am I giving back?'. They don't realize that what you give is really what you keep at the end of the day with yourself. I think today's youth has to get a little simpler. 


It's getting glamour oriented, it's getting hi-tech success. A lot of super success dramas are happening. We need to be more grounded, move towards simplicity and then to be successful. See there is a difference between what you need and what you want. An empty stomach cannot feed someone, so feed yourself to the maximum. But then be a giver. The only little message that I have for today's youth is that if you want abundance in your life, if you want abundance to stay, please also be a giver. Atleast do one good deed a day for someone else.


What role should the youth play in building a strong nation and country?
Just be the best you can. You can't change the whole world, you can only change yourself. And if you can be a good example and if you make sure what you do during the day, then you have done it. It's like the thought that says, 'Take care of your minutes and the years will take care of themselves'. Each one can take care of himself or herself that he or she is doing the right stuff. The biggest problem we have is we always keep looking at the others. He didn't do this right and he didn't do that right. But what have you done? So their biggest role towards nation building today is taking responsibility for what you are doing as an individual towards nation building and stop looking at others.


So where do you want to be five years from now?
Five years from now on I want to be known as a person who can be felt in people's lives. As a giver. As somebody who fights for the underdogs, for those who have no one to turn to. So five years from now I see myself as a total big-time social activist. Someone who has touched a lot of lives. That's my biggest desire. But yes, I see myself as a very powerful person who has come a long way.


So where do you want to be five years from now?
Five years from now on I want to be known as a person who can be felt in people's lives. As a giver. As somebody who fights for the underdogs, for those who have no one to turn to. So five years from now I see myself as a total big-time social activist. Someone who has touched a lot of lives. That's my biggest desire. But yes, I see myself as a very powerful person who has come a long way.


DAKSHA IS Promptitude

We should have Active State of Mind, Alert, Aware, Prepared for complete action with all situations in mind,  to respond promptly ‘TO WIN’