“Bhabhi namaste” — people greet her every time they see her. A crusader for youth issues and empowerment of women, she oozes confidence. Her personality is taller than she is. And theatre is her true calling.
Meet Rekha Sahay, also the dutiful wife of sitting Congress MP from Ranchi Subodh Kant Sahay and his campaign muse for Lok Sabha 2014.
Draped in a black-bordered mustard sari embellished with a beaded neckpiece, the 50-something woman has the ability to look graceful and doughty at the same time. “I am incredibly passionate in everything I do. Party members asked me to come this time. I have my own schedule of campaigning and always appeal to voters to choose the right candidate,” Rekha, who lives in Mumbai, told The Telegraph in a tête-à-tête at Sahay’s Dhurwa residence.
Her special drive for hubby Sahay is taking her to capital pockets like Kokar, Sithio and Upper Bazar, besides Dhurwa, where her audience comprises mostly women. “They share with me problems like power and water crises and sanitation woes. I urge them to fight for their rights. My husband too supports my ideologies and I hope people will come forward to vote (for him).”
On the sidelines of campaigning for the Congress MP, Rekha continues her duty towards the society. She encourages people to use paper bags instead of plastic ones and explains to them the pros and cons of government schemes.
“During my visit to various neighbourhoods, I see drains choking on polythene. I request people not to use non-biodegradable materials. I tell them about benefits they are entitled to from the government and ask them to take charge of their lives instead of mongering for sympathy. Whether my husband wins or loses, I want people to vote right,” Rekha’s no-nonsense attitude reflected.
For many, she is rightfully a role model — a responsible mother, a perfect wife and an excellent actor-director-producer who juggles her marriage and career with great elan.
Many may remember her as Balsamma from the popular 1989 television series Circus, also starring a very young Shah Rukh Khan in the lead role. Rekha has impressed her audience with her acting skills in many plays and movies, and also produced the Farooque Shaikh-starrer telefilm Hindola for Doordarshan in 1993. Currently, she is settled in Mumbai where their daughter Yashaswini is studying in Class XII.
For her ilk, she is the ultimate woman who can do anything she wants to. “Bhabhi has an amazing personality. Her voice is so convincing. She is like achievement personified,” said Nusrat Jahan, a resident of Hindpiri.
Rekha’s role is restricted to campaigning. She has no intention to join politics. Serving the society is and will be her sole objective. “Youths are the future. If they prosper, the country will,” she signed off.