Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Social Connect with Sana Fakhar

Interview and Photography by Hamza Shafique (Instagram / Facebook)

I last interviewed Sana Fakhar for my social connect segment in 2018 and since then we stayed in touch. When I found out she is here in Dubai for some collaboration, I contacted her for an interview, to which she agreed. My idea was to interview post success of GEO network's drama "Tu Mera Junoon" and about her second innings in Pakistan entertainment industry. We met in Dubai Festival City mall and interview soon turned into a discussion on important topics like individuality, feminism, fitness etc. and I was really impressed with how evolved she is as a human being.
I still tried to put our discussion down into my usual format of 5 questions and here it is.

DDR: Sana you are one of those stars who have seen both eras, how has been your second inning post revival of Pakistani Drama and Cinema so far?
Sana: I am really thankful to Pakistan TV industry for accepting me and giving my career another life. Above all what I like is that I get the opportunity to portray different roles, whether it’s the beautiful yet lonely Sonia Jahan of Rangreza or evil knifing Roshan of Tu Mera Junoon. I see a lot of young actors working under so much pressure, pressure of having right look, right social media posts, pressure of being visible, being relevant. I have luckily passed that phase and am really enjoying the space I am in right now.

DDR: Social Media is a strong tool and I find you among the active ones. But I must say your account is very different, where there are more posts about your workout routines and your personal life, is this intentional?
Sana: I take social media as a tool to show people what they don’t see otherwise on screen in my work. I believe as public figures we have this added task to be responsible toward what we project. I want to inspire Pakistani woman especial young girls to find their inner self, focus more on their health, learn life and work balance and naturally one can only lead by example. It’s not that I do it on purpose for a social media show, but this is how I am in general. I am a knowledge seeker, I like to learn newer and newer things and then adopt what I find interesting. I want every Pakistani woman to find their individuality. A woman should live her life on her own terms, if you want to do Hijab, do it but it should be your decision. As a society it's time we stop deciding what a woman should do and also, it’s the time woman should put some effort to find who they really are and who they want to be. And this what I try to project through my social media channels.

DDR: How do you handle criticism?
Sana: Its obvious not everyone likes you all the time and being in the public eye where every move is being watched and analyzed, we tend to get a lot of criticism and if I may say bluntly hate comments along with appreciation. I take my criticism very seriously, if I believe it’s true then I acknowledge it, assess it and work hard to fix it. As a human being I believe we constantly need to evolve, I am not the same Sana who joined the industry, I have grown from that and a lot of that is to do with the criticism that I get and how I react to it. There is no need to be defensive but yes also at the same time I will request people to be careful with words. Feedback and criticism is one thing, but strong hate sentiments and language is not and should not be acceptable. You don’t know how the other person would feel and react. For the person who commented may even forget about the comments but then you never know how the person at the receiving end will be impacted, so please avoid such messages and comments.

DDR: Being a public figure how do you manage attention in public places? I mean a simple visit to mall with Kids is not easy, does it ever bother you?
Sana: You know for me it’s opposite, sometimes I think, what if it all stops how would I feel then. Where ever I am today is because these people appreciate my work. I worked very hard to be where I am today. So, it doesn’t bother me in fact it makes me happy. I am also careful from my end as well, so I don’t step out a lot out but yes, I do go to malls with kids or to their school and I absolutely adore the attention and love that I receive from people. I fear the time when it will stop.

DDR: What's next for Sana?
Sana: I will be working till the time I can and there are couple of projects including an action film in the pipeline but what my main aim now in larger perspective is to leave behind a legacy of quality work, women empowerment and fitness. I want to encourage woman to know themselves, in today’s world its good to be respectful towards your father, brother or husband’s wishes but its, equally important to find what your inner voice and work toward it. And when it comes to the topics closer to my heart, I even keep aside the monetary benefits. Also, as I said earlier, I am a knowledge seeker so there is a lot for me to learn and grow as a human being.

DDR: Thanks a lot for giving us time and I am sure my readers will have a thing or two to learn from this interview.
Sana: You are most welcome, it was lovely meeting you and I really enjoyed the conversation we had.

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