For the Fans of Masoom (and others)

Remember Mini ? The little girl from Masoom ? Well she is a grown up mother of two and teaches music. Hers is one of the most beautiful New Year letters I got this year and am going to share :
Dear Uncle,
Wishing you and your loved ones a very Happy New Year! I’m sure, the new year will be packed with more laurels, good health and peace for you.
I’d called you to wish you on Diwali, but couldn’t get through. Hope I get to meet you sometime this year. Really looking forward to it.
This is something I read, and really liked it:
“It doesn’t matter what you do for a living…
..It doesn’t matter how old you are…
..It doesn’t matter what planets are squaring your moon…
…What matters is if you can be with joy, mine or your own, if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human…”
– from “The Invitation” by Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Hope you have a great year ahead!
Love and Regards,
Aradhana (Mini)

49 thoughts on “For the Fans of Masoom (and others)

  1. The Invitation” by Oriah Mountain Dreamer
    It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
    I want to know what you ache for
    and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
    It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
    I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
    for love
    for your dream
    for the adventure of being alive.
    It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon…
    I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow
    if you have been opened by life’s betrayals
    or have become shrivelled and closed
    from fear of further pain.
    I want to know if you can sit with pain
    mine or your own
    without moving to hide it
    or fade it
    or fix it.
    I want to know if you can be with joy
    mine or your own
    if you can dance with wildness
    and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
    without cautioning us
    to be careful
    to be realistic
    to remember the limitations of being human.
    It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me
    is true.
    I want to know if you can
    disappoint another
    to be true to yourself.
    If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
    and not betray your own soul.
    If you can be faithless
    and therefore trustworthy.
    I want to know if you can see Beauty
    even when it is not pretty
    every day.
    And if you can source your own life
    from its presence.
    I want to know if you can live with failure
    yours and mine
    and still stand at the edge of the lake
    and shout to the silver of the full moon,
    It doesn’t interest me to know where you live
    or how much money you have
    I want to know if you can get up
    after the night of grief and despair
    weary and bruised to the bone
    and do what needs to be done
    to feed the children.
    It dosen’t interest me who you know
    or how you came to be here
    I want to know if you will still stand
    in the centre of the fire
    with me
    and not shrink back
    It dosen’t interest me where or with whom
    you have studied
    I want to know what sustains you
    from the inside
    When all else falls away
    I want to know if you can be alone with yourself
    and if you truly like the company you keep
    in the empty moments

  2. Dear Mr. Shekhar Kapur & Ms. Aradhana (Mini of Masoom), I watched Masoom over the Holiday break and loved every moment of it again!!!!!
    The 3 children were absolutely “natural” in playing their roles and the child like innocent pranks were placed at the right moments throughout the movie. You surely have a way with portraying human emotions very well through various age groups- the most difficult being that of children for a movie director-which you seem to accomplish very well. It is indeed heart warming to receive messages of well being and good wishes from people with whom you have been associated decades earlier. This is truly a blessing from God that you are so fondly remembered through your work! God Loves You and So Do We!

  3. Wow!
    Happy new year to Mini!
    I still remember the little pretty face of yours in the film.You have written wonderful words to start the new year.
    Your post reminds us to be childlike…hmmm not childish though! If we are truly happy it really becomes contagious.
    Liked the words….”It doesn’t matter what planets are squaring your moon…” Because the individual still has a choice. Those damn astrologers who predict new year prophecies for all the politicians, famous people, I think if something happens to planets & individuals who get affected…
    …then I am 100% sure (after reading this post) that if you are genuinely happy, and when the being is in natural rhythm…something happens to all those planets and the moon as well….
    Happy new year to the child in you!

  4. wow great letter…
    Shekhar ji ..I am just curious to know if you ever happened to hear about an old malayalam movie ‘Olangal'(1982) ,lead played by Amol Palekar which has similiar story lines of Masoom .. Does have gooD songs too by illayaraja

  5. Good to learn about the third kid in the trio. Masoom is one of my favorite films. The interaction of the kids was so refreshing and ‘real’ that it is as if, a slice of one’s own childhood- like the kids tiff scene where mini retorts to her sister’s name calling by spewing forth her own list of disliked vegetables!
    Masoom and another film around the same time- Arth, dealt with the theme of infidelity in marriage but with very different treatment of the subject. Arth I think was idealistic, while Masoom was practical in its approach.
    This is one of the films that one can never get tired of watching and thanks to everyone who made it happen for us, the viewers!

  6. Hello Sir,
    Thanks for creating such a masterpiece as Masoom..26 yrs later it still touches & never seizes to surprise with its sensitivity. You are a rare director who can so beautifully bring out the best from Kids.
    A request, can you request Aradhana to send you her latest snap & will you plz upload it for us. Likewise are you in touch with Tina, the child star from Mr India

  7. Last month, I did happen to remember her and was wondering what happened to her. Google landed me nowhere and I was left wondering what happened to that little girl in that movie and song that became so much a part of my early childhood memories.
    Reading today that she’s a mother of two now and her beautiful if borrowed words, makes me strangely smile and warm inside. Like knowing a dear childhood friend is happy in life and in peace.
    Thanks for letting us know.

  8. i really liked that character..I was about that age myself..
    But the most important part that no one talks about is the awesome screenplay of the film (becasue of the screeplay Masoom will live forever).. it’s written by GULZAR sahab..he’s the greatest poet greatest story teller..I wish he makes more film..he also wrote the screenplay for Chachi 420..another film that will live forever..

  9. Mr Kapur,
    I loved the movie ‘Masoom’ and basically everything about it. “Tujh se naraz nahi” is my all-time favorite song. One thing always keeps bugging me though. The second part of the song, “Zindagi tere gum ne” seems incomplete, in the movie, probably because of editing. I’m sure Mr Gulzar must have completed it with some great words, but I can’t find anywhere on the internet. I’d really appreciate it if you can share those words.

  10. Dear Mr. Kapoor
    I am very much thanks for such good direction masoom movie. Really i feel its great to view then viewing todays top movies.
    Shabana Azmi specially excellent , no more words to express and god bless you and continue such creative films. And lastly i want to meet you is it possible?
    Thanks in adavnce
    Lalith Jain

  11. Dear Sir,
    How are you sir? I am Shoukath Nalakaparamba from UAE.I want to share some time with u for a new story about british era in india.if u don’t mind please contact me if your interested in my mail. I saw your film “Elizabath” and i like this movie very much.that’s why i think about u for discussing of my new story. My contact id is follows:
    Thanks & Regards,
    Shoukath Nalakaparamba

  12. One of the best memories of my childhood are related to Masoom.All the best to Mini and Shekhar has all the wishes all the time

  13. I looked exactly like Mini from Masoom when i was a kid..i would really like to see what she looks like now!what is her full name?

  14. hi i like the movie so much its very to close to my heart and some or other connection it having with my emotion i simply love song tujse……naraj…my eyes full of tears ..i cant stop i searched for minni but cant get more info let her get in public pls…..

  15. Dear Sir,
    I love the movie Masoom.. Have seen many a times.. Wonderful movie.. Can’t be compared with any other movie in terms of the sensitivity and emotion that it carries.. Doesn’t matter – everytime I start watching the movie, everytime I cry.. What to say.. Unable to express more than this.. Uncomparable.. Love the movie.. Thanks a lot for bringing this piece of writing from Aradhana (Mini).. Wonderul wordings that brought forward by her via you now.. Thanks to you for making SUCH A WONDERFUL MOVIE.. That was your debut movie but noone can’t say that that was directed by you for the first time .. Hats off to you.. First time I have seen your blog archives so expressing my views also little late..

  16. Hello Mr Kapur,
    I am not sure if this is the right way to reach you. I just have a simple message for you. I am a pediatric endocrinologist based in USA. In my effort to find a way to contact you, I came across your blog and discovered that you are making down to earth films concerning the stark realities of life that we would rather not face as long as it does not affect us. This e mail might be sent to you at the wrong time but I had to say this-

    I am not an ardent Bollywood fan nor one of your loyal fans. I watch movies for fun and depending on my mood I even watch serious movies. I use movies as an escape from stresses of life. I loved your first movie – Masoom when I first saw it as a young teenager. I have seen in several times over the years in bits and pieces. I recently saw the film again in its entirety, and realized that there are so many deep thoughts and message sin this movie. I have not seen the English movie this is based upon as your creation seems unique to my eyes. Anyway, at this stage of my life (in my late 30’s and a mother of two infants),an idea for a new sequel or movie struck me and that’s why I am e mailing you.

    What if —

    There is a new movie with the same actors that were in the previous movie, only now this movie is about the third generation. It could be a movie involving the new video games/chip/McDonalds generation of children who do not want to play and interact with their family. This movie could involve the subject of childhood obesity and how the young parents find it difficult to do the right thing in the daily grind of life in Mumbai or any other metropolitan city.
    My career involves working with childhood obesity and its complications and it is worst in the developed countries (a term I do not like to use since many aspects of these countries are not as developed). However, I fear that this problem is gaining roots in cities like Mumbai and we need to make them aware.

    Of all the mediums, movies are the strongest and reach deep into society. I like Masoom because it has so many unsaid messages expressed by these talented actors but at the same time, is not repetitive and does not spell out the social/philosophical message for the audience but instead relies on the intelligence of people watching it.
    It also is entertaining for young teens ( the very reason I remembered the movie all these years and wanted to show the songs to my children).

    I strongly urge you to consider such a movie. It would be great and I can guarantee that it will be a success and will be watched by all generations in a household and will be shown to their next generation too!.

    Finally, thank you from the bottom of my heart for this movie. I watched it through the eyes of a mother, a married woman and one from a generation that has been exposed to the traditional conservative values of Indian society as well as the modern westernized society that I have to work and live in. I have used the messages to better myself and to learn the value of true forgiveness. I have not had to deal with the issues portrayed in the movie but can find several examples in my family life where I could have been more supportive of my family members. Good luck in your next venture – “Paani” I will watch it only when I have the stomach for it.

    Thank you.

  17. Wow… that’s really nice.. thought.. and i am very happy to know that people who work with you remember you and vice versa..great …going Shekhar Sir

  18. Dear sir,

    I am a big fan of Masoom movie. That little girl “Mini” was so cute. I just wanted to know that where she is and how she looks. I am sure, you must be having information about her. Please share.


  19. I can’t believe I finally got an answer about where this little girl ( now grown up) is now. I was always wondering what happened to her. Thank you so much for posting. She was so cute in the movie, and now she’s grown as a music teacher and a mommy of two little ones :). I hope we can see a pic of you both soon! 🙂

  20. sir your movie Massom was mind blowing .it really made me cry for some time the story line ,character ,dialogue theme all were absolutely and correctly executed . sir i want mini,s present photo how she look like now if can that small character was wonderfull

  21. Dear Mr.Kapur,

    I am Aradhana’s school friend from Kanpur and trying to find her through facebook but in vain. I read this new year letter dtd 2nd Jan,2010 and thought of asking you about her whereabouts and contact details and if possible her Phone no. I will be very thankful to you if you help me to find her.
    Ruchika Gupta Bansal

  22. Thanx a lot for forwarding my contact details to Aradhana Srivastava (Mini of Masoom). Waiting eagerly to hearing from her soon.

    Ruchika Gupta Bansal

  23. Hello Shekhar Kapur:

    MASOOM is one of my all-time favorite movie. Simple, and strong storyline. I recently saw a youtube recording of yours where you mention how the story made it such great film and your limited knowledge of technical-stuff of making the film did not matter.

    Also, standing next to your creation of the film was RD Burman and Gulzar’s artistry. I was just listening to MASOOM songs this morning (USA, feb/2011) on way to work and so refreshing songs.

    I have one question for you though. What was your’s of RD Burman’s rational to pick little known singers for some songs? Economic factors or someting else? MASOOM was one of the only 3 films in which the God-RD Burman got a FilmFare award (prestigious inIndia)

    Thanks and can’t wait for PAANI. btw: I saw your NEW YORK I LOVE YOU little film and found it mesmerizing.

  24. thank you Vikram, the selection of the singers was based on the needs for real children singing (lakdi ki kathi) because we collectively thought that we needed new voices (Anup ghosal with Tujhse naraaz nahi..) , actually if I remember correctly our producer Devi Dutt was the one that supported Anoop. Asha ji also sang a (Do Nain ..) for us.

    working with RD Burman was amazing though I do not think he knew quite what to make of me. as i often had the audacity to actually write songs myself and turn up. Fortunately Gulzar Sahib was an integral part of the team, and he would treat me as a compassionate teacher would treat an overenthusiastic student. They were amazing together though as a team. One always know what the other meant by a look in the eye, a small gesture etc.

    The creation of the music of Masoom was an absolutely brilliant process to be part of.


  25. Dear Mr. Kapoor,

    I have watched Masoom innumerable times. It’s my all time favourite movie. Wrote this long time back for a website called As a matterof fact I just re read what I had written and noticed a whole lot of grammatical errors 🙂 Hope you’d find time to read this

  26. Hello Shekhar Kapur:

    Thanks for responding to my question about MASOOM. Couple of my quick comments:
    – You are doing wonderful by being involved with Dr. Mohammad Yunus and his pragmatic approach to the eternal problem, in a world where artists and big-guys have words and little action
    – Few years back Mira Nair released DVD of her 1st feature SALAAM BOMBAY with her commentary and interviews/ discussions with some cast and crew members. I feel if you do the same for MASOOM it would be a relished by so many of us all over the world. (I just read Naseeruddin Shah’s interview, where he mentions MASOOM is your best work to date.) You may want to look into if Criterion series would support.
    – Loved your comments/special features in THE FOUR FEATHERS and ELIZABETH
    – You seem to be one of the intense and emotionally attached person and filmmaker and I feel if you take a swifter approach to creating your films, (like Bergman did or Woody Allen does for so many films, which is approximately. 1 year) you would still be able to create masterpieces because you have so much juice flowing in your system. Also, it will fit in well with your panic-mode you mentioned in one of your TEDIndia sessions few years back 🙂


  27. Hi Mr. Shekhar,
    It was great to hear about Aradhana. Acyually she was my batchmate in Sheiling House School, Kanpur. I have been trying to know more about her for a long time through facebook etc., but in vain. It’ll be great if she contacts me through email (ID: Please forward this message to her on my behalf. Bye Shantanu

  28. Hello again Mr. Shekhar Kapur:

    I can’t help but comment again to you about your MASOOM:

    – I saw the DVD’s of MAN, WOMAN and CHILD and also MASOOM and I have to say your rendering of the characters and the twist in stories is better than the English movie. If I remember right you had mentioned inone of your interviews you pitched this story to a financier when he was non chalant and bored by your original some other movie pitch. It sounds like you created MASOOM with Gulzar and RD-God etc. your own interpretation of the book and I think you did better than the book.
    – One of the things that stands out to me is the mother’s character. In the English movie she lets the son go but in Indian version she shifts her heart and embraces the little one. Besides it being an “Indian thing to do.” I also think that the English version places her in the antagonist arena. I would do that. You did good.
    – Additionally you scored better than the English version on two other counts: Portrayal of affection between the father and the son; and the characterization and depth you gave to the boy;
    – MASSOM is slightly melodramatic but it had to be to cater to Indian sensibilities but your piercing of the above factors makes you a great artist

    So long, happy PAANI-ing

  29. Dear Mr. Kapur, Namaskar. I am Abhishek Gangal From UAE. I am not saying something which you have not heard before ,still just want to convey- what a great work you have done ! The story, the actors, the music ,you name it- still bring tears and keeps me glued.Life came a full circle when my 4yr daughter Aditi has demanded to watch the movie 8th time in last two weeks. Seems she is not getting enough of Rahul Bhayya and mini didi !!

    She has threatened to not to eat till I take her to “Rahul Bhayya’s’ house where she can meet the trio and play with them !!!
    Please help me in getting out of this Dharamsankat by giving their address so that she cancels her bhookhadtal lest I will send her to your House !!!

    What more testimony anybody can ask for when it is touching the heart of a 4yr old even after so many yrs!

    Please make more movies of this calibre..With lots of Luck and Love…Abhishek Gangal

  30. Dear Shekhar Sir,

    I am very much curious to know about the star cast of film Mr India, since 2-3 years I am searching for their names, the recent pictures of them, but they are no where available. It feels good to see the kids grown up. I know about Ahned Khan, Aftab, Karan Nath etc others are not known, please provide some info.
    And Hi Aaradhna, I liked u a lot as Mini, rishi kapoor usme aapke mama the na? 😀

    Thank you very much that you provided us the platform to reach to you.


  31. Dear Sir,

    Want to mention one more thing: Shabana ji is so good in this movie, her expressions’ whne Jugal says’ Sorry Aunty’ and she cant control her emotions and breaks down.. and the song in Lataji’s voice : ‘ Tujhse Naraz nahin Zindagi’… You did Magic with this Shekhar Sir, simply a magic!!

    Hats Off!!



  32. Dear Sir,

    I have watched Mr India and Masoom number of times but still I like them.Sir why are you not making any hindi movies. Sir what about a sequel to Masoom

  33. Hi Sir,

    Yes the kids in Masoom were great n had given such a memorable performance and that too at such a young age. Truly gifted kids.

    What about the pretty girl Tina from ‘Mr India’. Who was she and any news about her?? Google too could not provide any information about her..I am curious to know who was the girl??

  34. Dear Sir,

    Perhaps this little note would be lost in a pile of comments, perhaps it shall be lucky enough to catch your attention, but I guess I would take my chance.

    I was a kid myself when Mr. India was released and perhaps like many other people who have mentioned and inquired about “Tina” and little “Mini” from Masoom, I have been curious myself all these years.

    Google, as someone else also mentioned, did not lead anywhere and there are no FaceBook profiles or anything. Would I be asking too much if you could request these stars (and so they remain forever, even if they are all grown up now) to share perhaps a picture on your site or some place else. I am led to believe that you still have been hearing from them.

    I know this might be the last thing on your list of things to do but I guess its been because of your work and art that they have become icons and still continue to remain fresh in the memory of so many others like me.

    Hope you shall consider this little request.

    Best regards,
    Himanshu Tandon

  35. dear shekhar ji…. please let us know where is the little girl now who played TINA in Mr India? .. its been haunting for years on my mind .. thank you and God Bless you.. my condolences to you and your family following the death of Dev Anand saab whom I respect and love … i have been following your whereabouts since Khandaan.. i was a kid then.. hope to hear something BIG from you soon..

  36. Hi Shekhar ji…kindly let me know where is Tina now? whats her real name? eager to see her recent pics…

  37. Dear Shekharji, I was around 8 years old when the movie Masoom released. It’s been 27 years since that iconic movie which you made, and I have watched it a zillion times already. My 2 year old son who was born in New York asks me to sing him ‘lakdi ki kathi’ as his bedtime lullaby. The video of the song is the only TV that we let him watch, and he seems completely mesmerized by the song. This is a mark of a true legend such as you whose movie warms the hearts of several generations, and across countries.

    I wish you would make a sequel of Masoom some day.

  38. Respected Shekarji. I have watched Masoom at least 25 times. I am in love with the direction, acting, story which could be very close to reality. I have watched all of your movies and ALL of your movies but Masoom is close to my heart. I live in the US for past 27 years but even my kids who are born here love this movie. They also think that you are one of the best director for this generation. Your movies warm hearts of all generations. My kids love the song “lakdi ki kathi” and my son even sings the song “Tujse naraz nahi..”. I would love to meet you when I visit India. It is good to know that we still have talent left in the Bollywood. The movie so nicely made that I understood the pain of a wife, a husband, a father and the son.

    Hope to here from you. Salute to the greatest director of our generation. Shekarji, please reply.

  39. Dear Shekhar ji,
    I dont believe in coincidences and guess there must be more in the fact that I was reading the same note of Oraih the Mountain dreamer from my fb notes posted year ago only a moment back . And here I am. Glad to be here .
    Each moment has its reason ..which only the universe is capable of knowing.

  40. My 2 nephews, living in US, always request for Kathee Ghoda song! 2 year old can barely make sentences but he likes singing along Dauda Dauda. Older one who is almost 3 year old knows the song lyrics, and sings along on his mini guitar!
    Thanks to you, Gulzar saheb, and entire team of Masoom – for a song which can be passed down to generations!

  41. i love her cuteness.
    I saw a telefilm in Doordarshan,in which she played a boy character “Babu” with a jadoo ki chhadi.
    I remember the first line of that song “Babu Bechara Hai Bada Pyara”.
    I love that too.

    lakdi ki kathee evergreen. my daughter daily sing this before going to bed.


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