Zarina Wahab

- Vikram Chandiramani

"Tum to bhangan lagti ho!" Raj Kapoor told Zarina Wahab when he saw her at FTII. She was upset but this motivated her to pay more attention to make-up and become presentable. She hailed from the hometown of Waheeda Rehman and in fact, even shared her guru with Waheeda. She was good at befriending people, saying the right things to the right people and Nargis, Waheeda, Raakhee and Rekha started singing her praises even before she signed her first film! Zarina had the image of the girl-next door, made acceptable by Jaya Bhaduri earlier, and the roles of middle-class young girl fitted her like the proverbial glove in films like 'Chitchor'76, 'Gharonda' (1977), 'Do Hawaldar', 'Gopal Krishna' (79), 'Salaam Memsaab' (1979), 'Aakhri Insaaf', 'Sitara', 'Taxi Chor'(1980), 'Khoon Ki Takkar', 'Roohi' and others. She was perfect as a typist, or even as a girl who could not type, or a girl in love searching for a roof below which she could build a 'gharonda' (nest).

After a brief affair with a young Aditya Pancholi, she made a real gharonda, marrying him and having two beautiful daughters. For quite some time, it seemed to be made of sand as the Poojas of the film world pursued the handsome and irresistable Aditya. There would be scenes. Their marriage was stormy, but the two finally settled down. These days Zarina is doing some TV serials.