July 23, 2018 FDCI

Becoming

Quiet and resilient are two virtues that take you far in modelling. Vijaya Sharma possesses both in abundance as she gets set for Act II­– Bollywood.

By Asmita Aggarwal

There are some perks when your father is working with the President of India and you have practically grown up in the Rashtrapati Bhawan. Vijaya Sharma is probably the only model who would have practically met all the Presidents of India from Pratibha Patil, Abdul Kalam, Pranab Mukherjee to the most recent Ram Nath Kovind. “It is the best place to live, really! It has the most beautiful gardens and living quarters and my dad is the personal secretary to the President so these are some of the perks our family of five enjoys,” she smiles.

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Growing up in a middle class family, with her mother working as a government teacher, the limited exposure to fashion didn’t deter her dreams. So after studying Home Science at Lady Irwin College, the 26-year-old, began her foray into modelling with her mentor and choreographer Rashmi Virmani in 2012. She was trained in how to walk the talk and pose and she was prepared for the Asian Supermodel contest.

Vijaya also represented India at Belarus, in the Supra National Contest and won Elite Model Look in 2014. “I belong to a conservative family and both my parents are from small towns, my dad from a village near Gwalior and my mom from Morena, Madhya Pradesh. It took them some time to get used to the style of work and the work itself and what it entails. And being the eldest of the three siblings the responsibility lay on my shoulders for my younger brother and sister,” she admits.

At five feet nine inches, Vijaya participated in Femina Ms India in 2013 and emerged as the finalist, which was most unexpected considering the level of competition. Taking on challenges started at the time when she won many trophies when Kalam used to organise cultural events at the Rashrapati Bhawan. “He was the best President I’ve met till now, full of ideas, always encouraging children, there is no one like him,” she confesses.

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Meditation keeps her sane and yoga her body fit two things that she indulges in everyday and when you are already svelte a little bit of dancing adds to your gym-toned physique. “I’m addicted to Bollywood and I love dancing, acting is my final goal. A film with Imtiaz Ali or Rajkumar Hirani, Anurag Kashyap, is what I am waiting for. I have got some offers, but it needs to be the right one which will catapult you to fame,” says the fan of Ranbir Kapoor and Ranveer Singh.

The future does involve becoming a trainer for pageants as she is a pro having participated and winning so many, but Bollywood is the final frontier. “Despite being in modelling and living alone in Mumbai for four years I haven’t made many friends, I would call most of them my acquaintances. I like to keep to myself, as I am yet to fully comprehend this world. But I do know that I feel the best when I am on the ramp,” she concludes.

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Fashion Design Council of India