Rani with Hasan Tariq and daughter Rabia, Photos: Guddu Film Archive
In Pakistani showbiz, working mums have been somewhat of a rarity. But there were those who defied the odds and we love them even more for it.
Rani Begum remains the quintessential Pakistani film heroine who continued to make her mark in films as an actress/dancer for well over two decades. She was there when Waheed Murad was at the height of his popularity (in the ’60s) and even appeared in his last completed film Zalzala (released in the late ’80s)!
Rani and director Hassan Tariq had a daughter together, Rabia, in the ’70s and although they later went their separate ways and she remarried twice, she always played the role of the doting mother till her last breath with aplomb. Rani also appeared as the leading lady in two PTV serials in the early ’90s opposite a young Ajab Gul and the dashing Azm-ul-Haq.
Mahnoor and daughter, Photos: Guddu Film Archive
Mahnoor Baloch is among the modern-day divas who have turned back the clock when it comes to looks. When she made her debut in showbiz in the early ’90s, she was already a mum and continues to turn heads to this day with her stunning good looks and acting talent while remaining firmly perched on the top rungs of the success ladder as a celebrity.
They set the precedent by trailblazing a path for mums in showbiz when none existed
Atiqa Odho may have played Fawad Khan’s mother in Humsafar but there are many out there who don’t believe she is ready to play a character actress just yet. How can a stunner like Atiqa Odho play a mum they ask, irrespective of the fact that she had kids of her own when she initially made it big. She hardly seems to have aged since she first appeared on TV in a tea advertisement two decades ago, and while her co-actors have gone on to portray older characters, she still seems to be the odd one out.
Zeba Bakhtiar played the title role in Raj Kapoor’s Henna, mesmerised Bollywood as well as local film industry with her surreal beauty in the ’90s and hasn’t changed much since her TV debut in the ’80s. Her son Azaan Sami Khan (producer of 021) is now a proud dad, making her and former husband Adnan Sami Khan proud grandparents! Zeba B is still fit enough to play a young screen mum and will hopefully remain so for many years to come.
Saba Hameed has been on television for nearly three decades, has aged gracefully into motherhood and still looks good onscreen. She played Iffat Rahim’s mum in Nangay Paon in the early ’90s and was the leader of the pack in Family Front as well; making her the most exciting mother of all.
Meesha Shafi and Saba Hameed
Her daughter Meesha is an accomplished artist who has appeared in Hollywood projects (The Reluctant Fundamentalist), Bollywood (Bhaag Milkha Bhaag) and Lollywood (Waar) besides being a successful singer, and now wife and mother to two kids, thereby promoting Saba Hameed to the status of grandmother!
Mere Paas (Bhi) Maa Hai!
Staying close to home while crossing the border into India, some of the most successful celebrity mums are ….
Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan: It’s a universal fact that at one time, there was no woman more beautiful in the world than Aishwarya Rai. Shortly after becoming a Bachchan bahu, she became mum to Aaradhya and ranks as one of the hottest mums on the planet. The 41-year-old is on a comeback trail and after a five-year absence will soon be seen back on screen.
Madhuri Dixit-Nene: The Dhak Dhak girl may be in her late 40s but she continues to act in films and endorse products in India, giving a tough time to younger challengers. The million-dollar smile is still in place, playing upon her lips as are the dance moves that endeared her to millions, and her legions of fans remain true to her to this day. She continues to sparkle like a diamond in the sky even after two sons with Dr. Shriram Madhav Nene.
Kajol: Fit as a fiddle at 40, she may have matured as an actress but Kajol is still her bubbly, cheerful self, continues to act in films whenever she wants and is ever mindful of giving enough time to her two adorable kids and hubby, actor Ajay Devgan.
Malaika Arora Khan: She danced into our lives with Chayya Chayya(1998) and stole Sallu Mian’s brother Arbaz Khan’s heart a couple of years later. Becoming a mum in 2002 didn’t stop her in her tracks, and one day this hot-stepper mum is seen dancing to ‘Munni Badnaam Hui’ while the next day she is rocking to Anarkali Disco Chali in Housefull 2. Watching her on screen remains a pleasure.
Sridevi: Just as some people never change, there are those who never age … and Sridevi is one of them. She was the ’80s Bollywood Queen who carried the title in the ’90s and then became a wife to Boney Kapoor (brother of her Mr. India co-star Anil Kapoor).
English Vinglish was one of the most-awaited comebacks in recent history and her antics transported audiences back in time to happier times. She may have been Madhuri’s predecessor but this Hawa Hawai isn’t going anywhere … she is here to stay.