“I love children; not just my own but everyone else’s children too.
“I love children; not just my own but everyone else’s children too. And my entire thought process as an actor, an entertainer and a producer has been geared towards providing something for them all in my own unique way. I am hugely passionate about kids. Most of my acting is designed to appeal to children more than adults. I love entertaining children,” confessed the King of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan, on his recent visit to the capital. “With every step (professionally and personally) that I take towards achieving the zenith of my career, I constantly try and look out for ways to do something that will elevate the young ones,” he added. SRK, who has three children out of whom the youngest, AbRam, is just three years old, was here to launch Kidzania — an international Edutainment platform catering specially to young minds and their creative energies.
Talking about the one quality that he has learnt from his own children that he highly appreciates, the prepossessing actor said, “I am surrounded by children these days; my own as well as their friends. And the one thing that I am finding very different or unique or fascinating is the fact that they are extremely straightforward. They are uprightly honest and clear-minded about life. I think we have a generation of kids who, because of the exposure of facilities around them, are simply going to be honest about what they want to do with their lives. I think I never possessed that sort of clarity when I was young. And this very quality is what I am learning from them these days.”
He goes on, “I’m learning that you have a thought, a belief, a dream and the confidence to give your best shot to it without getting taken in by any sort of a pressure — peer or parental.”
Furthermore, SRK went on to talk about his own childhood. As the question about what all shararatein he used to partake in as a child came up, a nimiety of memories came back to him as he revealed, “We used to live in apartment flats. I used to indulge in two most stupid and completely wrong acts, which I would in advance warn all kids never to follow. One of them was unnecessarily ringing the doorbell of all my neighbours and then running for my dear life. And the second one for which I was terribly bashed by my parents after I accidentally got caught (very, very wrong act — children, seriously do not attempt it) was bombing letterboxes of my neighbours during Diwali. We used to stay on the third floor and I clearly remember a girl and her family who used to stay above us on the fourth floor. She was elder to me but she was liked by everyone, especially by the boys. And I don’t know why or what had gotten into me. I actually went on to bomb HER letterbox out of all the boxes that were left from the neighbourhood. Her mother caught me and came rushing to my father after the incident, and complained that I did it to grab the attention of her daughter. My father replied, ‘Agar aap mujhe pehle miltin toh aapka attention grab karne ke liye main bhi aapka letterbox uda deta’. She cracked up like anything after listening to this and our families became friends. But all in all, it was my juvenile stupidity,” he said with sufficient probity.
As a child, did he possess any fantasies “I did a song in a movie called Yes Boss: chand tare tod lau sari duniya par mai chhau bas itna sa khwab hai. This sums up my fantasy,” said the actor who also broke into a mini jig and sang the song for everyone, followed by a huge round of applause.
The megastar has three children: Aryan, Suhana and AbRam and he doesn’t miss any chance to talk about them. “I am nonchalant, insouciant and debonair around them,” he said when quizzed about the kind of special bond that he shares with his little ones. Does he count himself among perfect fathers and does he get to know what’s been going on inside his children’s heads even with his busy schedule “I won’t say that I know everything about them but yes, they can come up to me and tell me anything...I think I am 60% good as a father and I spend a lot of time with my children. AbRam is still innocent and he has his own ludic way of talking to me,” he said and went on to reveal that he recently visited London just to spend a joyful weekend with Aryan and Suhana, who are pursuing their respective studies there. “Just two days ago, I went to London to spend an extended weekend with Aryan and Suhana. We hardly talked about anything intellectual. We just lay down on our sofas, watched movies and ate chips the whole time.”
The Dilwale star had said in an interview on his birthday that there was “extreme intolerance” in the country. His statement was then criticised by politicians and the film fraternity, and many even asked him to apologise. When asked to comment on the intolerance issue again, SRK steered clear of it by saying, “This is not a good platform to discuss intolerance,” and turning away with a shrug. Finally, as flocks of vociferous journalists (who were his die-hard fans too) cackled about how much they loved him, he happily took a selfie with the bunch.