Maanayata Dutt opens up about lov­ing and liv­ing with San­jay Dutt, fam­ily and her roller­coaster jour­ney

Savvy - - Contents -

I have al­ways been very re­bel­lious and have done things the way I wanted to.

I am Maanayata Dutt. I am head­strong and can’t be con­trolled. I al­ways be­lieve that if you love some­thing, it be­comes a part of you. I am a water lover and be­lieve in flow­ing end­lessly. I am a firm believer in my val­ues but I would never force them on any­one. I am not the type of per­son to curb or judge peo­ple. I be­lieve that every­one has a way of re­act­ing, act­ing, lov­ing and liv­ing their life. So I let them be as they are.

My real name is Dil­nashin, but very few peo­ple know that. The name ‘Maanayata’ was given to me by di­rec­tor Prakash Jha while film­ing ‘Gan­gaa­jal’. I love my new name and so does Sanju. The amaz­ing part is there are peo­ple who claim to know me so well and have sto­ries to tell about me, but sadly they don’t even have my name right. ‘Dil­nawaz’ is not my name but I have never both­ered to cor­rect them. I do not be­lieve in wast­ing my time and en­ergy in jus­ti­fy­ing my­self to peo­ple who are ir­rel­e­vant and do not mat­ter to me. The ones who mat­ter do not need any ex­pla­na­tions.

San­jay and I both come from dif­fer­ent re­li­gions and cultures but nei­ther of us is the kind of per­son to in­ter­fere with any­body’s life. We have raised our kids with very lib­eral val­ues and blended cultures. They are free to choose what­ever they want – be it ca­reer, re­li­gion or food habits.


Born and brought up in Ban­dra, Mum­bai, in a con­ser­va­tive Mus­lim fam­ily, I am half Kash­miri and half Ut­tarpradeshi. I have an older brother who is a pro­duc­tion en­gi­neer and a younger sis­ter who has done her MSc in Maths fol­lowed by MPhil, plus was fe­lic­i­tated with a Dr Ab­dul Kalam Azad schol­ar­ship. She is cur­rently pur­su­ing her PhD and is teach­ing maths at an engi­neer­ing col­lege. My grand­fa­ther had a con­fec­tionery busi­ness and owned a few bak­eries.

My par­ents split when I was about seven years old. They had their rea­sons, val­ues and dif­fer­ences. My mom is very re­li­gious and con­ser­va­tive, which con­tra­dicted with my fa­ther’s more open views. Though my par­ents did not get di­vorced, they lived sep­a­rately.

As kids, my sib­lings and I had a great child­hood. But we’re all very dif­fer­ent. I have al­ways been very re­bel­lious and have done things the way I wanted to. In fact, few years ago, my mom men­tioned to my sis­ter, ‘Your older sis­ter never ar­gued with me. She al­ways lis­tened to ev­ery­thing bow-headed and never raised her voice’. To which my sis­ter replied, ‘I ar­gue with you be­cause for me, your per­mis­sion mat­ters, for her, it never did. She

Li’l Maanayata

My kids - Shahraan & Iqra

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