Who is Abu Saleem: Monica Bedi
Her closeness to Rahul Mahajan on reality TV show ‘Bigg Boss’ had reportedly unnerved her ex-beau Abu Salem, but actress Monica Bedi is unfazed. She says his comments and reactions don’t make any difference to her.
“Monica Bedi is out of her past. Abu’s (Salem) reactions to anything won’t affect me and they are never going to come in the way of my career,” Monica told IANS over phone from Mumbai.
“My past is my past. I will never go back to it. I respect Abu and the relationship we shared, but I have left it behind. It’s been a long time now. For me it is all over and I’m ready to start life afresh,” she said.
Monica had told her “Big Boss” housemates that she is not married to Salem. But the jailed mobster had apparently taken offence and had issued a notice to her, claiming that she is still his legal wife. He said that they had got married in a mosque in Los Angeles in November 2000.
Though Monica did roles in movies like “Jodi No.1″, “Jaanam Samjha Karo” and “Pyaar, Ishq Aur Mohabbat” in her short-lived Bollywood career, she shot to limelight when her affair with Salem became public. She was arrested with the underworld crimelord in Portugal and they were extradited together in 2005.
After months in jail, Monica made a comeback of sorts with her surprise entry on “Bigg Boss” with an aim “to start life afresh”.
During her stint on the show, Rahul Mahajan, son of late Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Pramod Mahajan, made romantic advances towards Monica on several occasions, but she used to walk away to avoid “unnecessary speculation in the media”. But now she appreciates “his love”.
“Rahul has a ‘bacha’ (child) in him, he is very patient and doesn’t get irritated quickly. I really like these qualities about him and respect his feelings for me. He is slightly mad, but not bad,” Monica said.
After being voted out of the show in the third week itself, Monica made a wild card entry in the eighth week.
She was hesitant in reciprocating Rahul’s advances when she returned on the show because of his closeness with actress Payal Rohatgi – something that she saw on screen after her first eviction.
“When I saw Rahul and Payal from outside, I was very confused about his feelings for me. I didn’t want to come in between them. Then I confirmed thrice with Payal. She told me that they are just friends and have no future together as she is very focussed towards her career,” Monica said.
Now Monica shares a close friendship with Rahul, but says it’s too early to talk about commitment and marriage.
“I couldn’t commit to him on the show. I need time. Things might change when he comes out because I’ll get to know the real Rahul only then. Besides, I want to work right now and re-establish myself in the industry.
“I have no marriage plans for the next two-three years and whatever it is, my parents will decide my future this time. I will definitely not go against them,” she said.
Monica says that her stint in “Bigg Boss” has transformed her from being “shy and reserved” to a “more talkative and confident” person.
“This show has really helped me change people’s image about me and in getting work in the industry once again,” she said.
The actress already has Lady Luck smiling on her. She has signed one film and will be working on two reality shows very soon, but she refused to give the details of the projects.