Acting has been my passion, but I also pursue it because I have family responsibilities, says Iqra Shaikh, who will be seen in Harphoul Mohini

She made her television debut at the age of 10 with Ek Mutthi Aasmaan. Later, Iqra Shaikh took a five-year hiatus and returned to the small screen with Harphoul Mohini, which stars Shagun Sharma and Zebby Singh. Speaking about the gap, Iqra, who is now 16, says: “I decided to put the game on hold for studies. I came back with a commercial followed by some web series and Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai. Before coming back, I took an acting course to improve my skills and have a better understanding of the craft.

Today, she manages two shows and her studies, simultaneously. Ask her how she balances her studies with filming and she replies, “I bagged Rang Jaun Tere Rang Mein, which was launched in January. Although my lead is currently on hold, I will be filming for two shows at once at some point. I recently finished writing the 10th standard exams, which ended the first week of April. At that time, I was also busy with the look test and promotional shoot for the new show. I got up early in the morning to study and then went to shoot. It was a bit difficult to manage both, but I’m glad I managed. I usually bring my books to film sets and study during breaks. I don’t want anything to get in the way of my education because it’s a must for me.

She plays Shagun’s sister in Harphoul Mohini. She shares, “I love my sister and I want to see her happy at all costs.”

That’s exactly how she is in real life too. Iqra, who lives with her maternal grandparents with her mother and two younger sisters, can do anything to make them happy. A lot happened on a personal level during the five-year hiatus. She says, “My parents separated in 2016 and my mum, sisters and I are staying with my grandmother. He took care of us, because my mother is a housewife. Things were going well when I started playing because my dad was there to take care of us. However, after their separation, I decided to get back into acting because I wanted to help my family. I want to see them happy. Everything I earn, I give to my mother. Even though my grandparents were extremely supportive, you don’t want to be a burden on anyone. We saved money when it came to spending money or buying things. Acting has been my passion but I also pursue it because I have responsibility for my family.

She adds, “I want to work hard and keep going because
jo bhi milega mehnat se hi milega. The difficult phase of my life made me stronger. Previously, I was not too responsible, focused and didn’t care much about my studies. But today, I understand my responsibilities much better. I started taking life seriously and working harder.