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Sonakshi: 'Sexual harassment at work is neglected'

By Rajul Hegde
Last updated on: March 15, 2017 17:16 IST
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'Women are ashamed of the repercussions that come when they speak about it.'
'Women feel they will be blamed for whatever has happened to them.'
'Unless women support each other and stand by each other, that will not change.'
Sonakshi Sinha speaks out.

After judging musical talent on Indian Idol, Sonakshi Sinha will now judge dance.

The actress joins the Nach Baliye Season 8 jury along with choreographer Terence Lewis and director Mohit Suri.

"I was always looking for something as good as -- if not better -- than Indian Idol to be a part of," Sonakshi says.

"When Nach Baliye came to me, I connected with the dance factor. I thought this would be the best thing for me to do at this point. It's not just dance, but the show is also about couples and their stories. A lot of them are not even dancers. It's interesting to see how they support each other."

I watch dance reality shows on and off and have been on the shows during my film promotions," she adds. "I enjoy it. I appreciate any sort of talent because you get to learn a lot."

Sonakshi will judge celebrity contestants on Nach Baliye. Will she be careful with her comments as a judge?

"I don't know if I am a cautious person because I am real and honest. If I like or dislike, it shows on my face," she says.

"I am transparent and that's something people like and relate with. But I also know how to put my thoughts across in a nice way, so that no one gets offended," she adds.

"They are all professionals and been in the industry where they have to face praise and brick bats. So they are used to it. Hopefully, that should help them manoeuvre their way through the show," she says.

The Dabangg actress says she enjoys dancing and giving stage shows.

"That's the favourite part of my profession. I started dancing at birthday parties and dance competitions when I was little. I used to get offended if I didn't win the prize," she says with a laugh.

"That's when I knew I loved to dance. I have not learnt professionally, but when I was younger, I would enroll myself in Shiamak Davar and Terrance Lewis' classes. I used to hate working out and dance was the only way I exercised."

One of Sonakshi's dance icons is Madhuri Dixit.

"Any girl from my generation would look up to her," she says. "Then we have wonderful dancers like Deepika Padukone, who is graceful, Alia Bhatt is so spunky... Ranveer Singh, Shahid Kapoor and Varun Dhawan are really good dancers."

Does she have a take on nepotism in Bollywood, a talking point in the Karan Johar-Kangana Ranaut war of words?

"Enough has been said by both of them," she says. "I don't have a take on nepotism because I feel if people talk about it I can give many examples of people who have made it without any connection with the industry like Amitabh Bachchan, Shatrughan Sinha, John Abraham, Anushka Sharma, Shah Rukh Khan..."

"A lot of people have made it without pointing fingers at anyone, without playing a blame game or without any support from the industry."

Sonakshi will perform at Justin Bieber's Purpose World Tour in Mumbai in May and she's working on a new single for it.

"I love Justin Bieber's music. I'm looking forward to his concert," she says. "Something came up about whether I could perform, but it's still in the initial stages. I am going to wait for confirmation to make an announcement. I am working on my next single."

Sonakshi had a lot to say about the sexual harassment accusations that The Viral Fever founder Arunabh Kumar is facing.

"Sexual harassment at work is neglected," she says. "Women are still ashamed of the repercussions that will come when they speak about it. Women also feel they will be blamed for whatever has happened to them," she says.

"Unless women support each other and stand by each other, that will not change. The government," she adds, "should take an initiative where they make women understand that they are not at fault if something like this happens."

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Rajul Hegde / in Mumbai