In real life too, the beautiful lady who has an ever smiling face comes across as soft spoken has a certain aura around her. Ask her about it and she smiles, "The glow is because I'm positive in life. Life always comes with difficulties so we either look at in a negative way and crib which shows on your face or you take it positively and that too reflects on your face when it glows so it is all about your attitude in life. I have a very positive attitude which I believe reflects as a glow on my face."
While many might mistake this as her debut on Indian Television, Poonam wants to correct them, "It is not my debut but yes it is my first daily soap. I was probably the first film person to do a Television serial Andaz when nobody was wanting to look at TV. Himesh Reshamiyaa who was just 19 years old was the producer of that show and everyone warned me about not doing it but I did the show and it was a hit in those times."
Not only this Poonam has been a front runner for many things and pioneered many things too, "Just as I have done TV before anyone else, I started doing theater too before most of them. I also had a website 18-20 years ago and now when everyone has one I've stopped updating it. I had launched a talent portal way back in 1995 Star Ya Kalaakar to guide aspiring actors. I was also associated with zeenext.com as a Consulting Editor" says the multifaceted actor who has taken up the show where her character Sharda Modi is shown to be an illiterate woman.
So what prompted her to take up such a character? "All these days I was not ready and mentally prepared to do a daily which needed my 20-25 days. I didn't feel right to give that kind of time commitment since my kids were still growing up. However, this was an interesting character and everything just fell in place. The character was nice, the producers - Jay & Kinnari Mehta were known to me and with whom I share a comfort level, the time is right."
Telling us more about her character Poonam adds, "It is a positive character who has her own philosophy in life to explain things. Sharda Modi is not very sophisticated and has her own way to explain things. Her philosophy is derived from simple things in life. She is not educated but is samajdhar otherwise some many people are educated but don't know how to treat fellow human beings.
Also, her daughter-in-law played by Krystle Dsouza complements my character. Both the characters are such that when the saas is insulted the bahu feels why is she treated like this and thus encourages her to do better instead of being happy about it. She advises her 'apni pehchaan banao' and till now you have been a mother, daughter, wife, sister, etc., but now come out in your own self."
Poonam is getting used to working in today's times, "This is the 1st time I am doing a daily soap and it is a whole new ball game altogether. The timings are very strenous but I try to wrap up by 7 pm or so and reach home by 8 - 8:30 pm." Does she find it very taxing? "Only the fact that I stay away from home for almost 12 hours daily is taxing but other than that I find work is very energizing and feel active. The moment you give up everything and sit at home suddenly everything is dull. It is nice to work and be active. My kids too have grown up otherwise I had been busy homework, projects, etc. Now I feel I have time to myself and they encourage me to have time for myself."
And what is the pehchaan she wants to have in real life? "I want to be known as a good human being above everything else. We have just one life which may get over anytime soon so in this short span of life we should try and be good to everyone till we are around. I want to live a good life and be a good human being," concludes the soft spoken Poonam on a positive note.
Seema Khot Mattoo