There were huge discussions about the 30 something actress living with her parents and actress sister Shamita Shetty and being accompanied by her mother for all business meetings, tours and shoots.
The screen beauty was not too happy about this tag from the western media. She quickly hit back by insisting that this is only about having a close knit family. "It's purely for emotional reasons. After a hard day's work, I need someone I can come home to. I don't travel with mum because I'm a baby," she retorted.
Shilpa's spokesperson Dale Bhagwagar leaps to her defense. "There are two basic reasons for the same, the first being the fact that Shilpa's mum is like her best friend. Secondly if her mum is around, Shilpa can be somewhat laidback as she looks into the nitty-gritty of all things. In a way it must feel like home for her. When she had joined "Big Brother", it was the first time she was traveling alone abroad and was without her mom for so many days at a stretch. Shilpa enjoys her mom's company. And her mom too is also a very chirpy bubby and happy go lucky person who talks and even yaps at times. It won't be an understatement to say that she is even bubblier than Shilpa and puts one at complete ease."
"Her mum accompanies her sister Shamita too, but then Shamita is much more independent and outgoing. She is much stronger. If she doesn't like somebody doing something, she quickly disciplines the other person. While Shilpa can't do that, she is too simple, sweet and extremely gullible. Sometimes if Sunanda Shetty is busy traveling with Shilpa, their dad travels with Shamita," adds Bhagwagar.
Shilpa is not alone. In Bollywood most actresses are known for being their mums' darlings. Kareena Kapoor is mostly seen around with her mother Babita, Priyanka Chopra and mum Dr Madhu Chopra are almost always together and there is Ayesha Takia whose constant companion is mommy Farida.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan has been known for her closeness to her mum Vrinda (more so before she became the Bachchan bahu). In fact when she had gone to the Oprah Winfrey show some two years ago, she was asked by the surprised host as to how at 30 she was still staying with her folks. Aishwarya went on to explain the stunned Oprah the intricacies of our culture.
In fact, certain sections of people have actually joked about "Bollywood actresses being handled by their mums" in various forums and
blogs. Mainly because staying with one's parents and traveling with
them after a certain age is alien behavior in the West and is against
their idea of independence. It's a part of Indian culture which they
can't really comprehend.
Explains Bhagwagar,"In the West, children and siblings move out of home once they reach a certain age. But that doesnâ€™t happen here since we are more attached to our parents. Not that they donâ€™t love their parents, but I think Shilpa and the rest are kind of upholding that very culture. Some people even here might feel a little uncomfortable about being accompanied by parents for business meetings and shoots. But Shilpa loves her parents so much that she can never take things that way."
-Sneha Hazarika (SAMPURN)