Rising like a phoenix

Rising like a phoenix

She has been bestowed with an honour like no other. Tollywood actress Flora Saini (also known as Asha Saini) received The Great Daughter of Soil Award in Mauritius recently, for her work towards the poor and helpless. Flora spoke to Metrolife on the award and her upcoming films.

Receiving the award was “a great experience” for the actress. “The President of Mauritius, Anirudh Jagannath, who is also an Indian, was present on the occasion. He celebrated his birthday on the same day.” She adds, “With Indians being a
small community in other countries and working hard to make a mark, such actions are more than welcome.”

Born in Chandigarh, Flora hails from an army family. She started her education in Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir. “I did my further schooling in Delhi and am based in Mumbai now. So I have pretty much been all over the place,” she laughs.

 She made her debut with the Telugu film Prema Kosam in 1999. After working in many Telugu films like Nuvvu Naaku Nachchav and Navvuthu Brathakalira, she debuted in Bollywood in 2004 with Love In Nepal opposite Sonu Nigam. Besides, she has worked in many Tamil and Kannada films as well.

Spanning over a decade now, Flora’s career has been quite a struggle. Hasn’t it? “Struggle is a minor way of putting it,” she says
modestly. “I have had some serious ups and downs in my career. I was doing really well till I fell in love with a producer whom I didn’t know was married. After a year-and-a-half long relationship with him, I became a victim of domestic violence and ended up with a broken jaw,” she reveals.

Flora was also caught in a visa controversy in 2008, where she was accused of forging her travel documents to go to the US. Quite hurt by the entire incident, she says, “Everyone went mad writing about it but no one even bothered to check with me on any of the details. Everything written about me was false and that was a real low point of my career.” But all said and done, Flora has emerged a much stronger person today. “It was my ‘karma’ and I became a victim of bad timings and circumstances.”

Flora’s kitty is full of interesting assignments now. She has completed shooting for Comedy Circus and Chiragadoo in Telugu, Atitha in Kannada and Dindakal Sarathi in Tamil. She has also signed a movie called Rain with known Tollywood actor Rajesh Krishna. “I may also join the Western Region Censor Board. I am waiting for the confirmation,” she notes. She also plans to work for the causes of women, children and old people. “After my relationship, I learnt that it’s very easy for men to fool women and women need to take a stand.”

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