“Married at the age of 15-16, I shifted from Wagholi(Pune) to Kanher(Satara) with my in-laws, where my husband had his furniture business. I had studied till 7th, that too in a way attending 2-4 months of school in a year, disinterestedly.
The expenses were more, and burdening my husband with all of it was not justified. Just worrying won’t help and this had to be resolved somehow. I started working as a rural preschool teacher. Later, when old SSC was shut off, I got enrolled directly to 11th and passed it. As the fortune would bring, our village got a dam and I got a job in the Water supply department.
I have always loved music and watching TV. I used to feel ‘What if I get to work on TV? But how!’ While in the Water supply department, I had a senior (Saheb) from the entertainment field. There was a drama planned for Ganesh festival and he asked me to join them. I was reluctant at first but then thought of giving it a try. The show was successful and I even received an award from Lakshmikant Berde. My daughter loved dancing, so I used to take her to her annual gatherings, Ganpati celebrations, etc which even I used to relish. Later I continued with the drama team for 5-6 more plays including one for Rajyanatya competition.
My husband was completely against acting but I wasn’t backing down too. I used to lie in the name of work and go for practice sessions. My daughter-in-law and son were supportive though. Later Saheb offered me roles in 2 films and then started the whole on-screen journey. I have worked in almost 30-40 movies, short films for small roles like mother, grandmother, aunt, etc.
As such, my natural behaviour is strict. Totally dashing! And now with this serial ‘Devmanus’, I got a similar character which even I take to the next level. Saru ajji reached homes through TV giving me an identity. People adore this character so much that even while meeting on streets, they ask me to enact her. Recently, I was called for a Haldi-Kumkum ceremony, and while everyone else was taking Ukhaanas I was told ‘Naav rahude, tumhi Saru ajjinchya shivya dya’.”
– Rukmini Sutar