When it comes to genetics, these kids have hit the jackpot. In honour of Mother’s Day, MAG talks to some favourite celebrity moms and their star children
on the rigours of child-rearing and the perks of having a famous parent…
Meera Ansari & Bushra Ansari
The power-packed mother-daughter duo is both respected and successful in their fields. Meera Ansari might have grown up as a celebrity kid but she thinks there is a downside to it. She believes people are careful when dealing in financial matters if they know who you are related to, “They don’t doubt your background, but the worst is that you probably have to work a bit harder because people think we get everything conveniently.”
“You can’t even accept gifts from friends that are in the same field because people think they are favours,” she notes.
Nevertheless, she had a pretty fun-filled childhood with a mother who was always there to fulfill her responsibilities no matter how big of a star she was or how busy her schedule would be. Back in the days, they would not have a driver or maid, Bushra made sure to pick and drop the kids herself.
“I used to get an early off from school than my sister, so my mother and I used to go to Mr. Burger. Then I’d tag along with her to the tailor or if she wanted to do some shopping.
We would then pick up my sister and go home,” she recalls fondly one of her best childhood memories. Meera thinks she had an ideal upbringing. It is very important for kids to have their mothers around especially in the first seven years because their personality is developing and one needs to be there to build it under one’s own supervision.
“We were not at all spoilt, we were kept really grounded. It wasn’t like we could get everything we wanted unless it was our birthday. We were taught the value of money. I want that for my son as well.” The super organised duo doesn’t specifically get to spend much time together on Mother’s day, but since Bushra’s birthday month is May too, they make it work!
“We were not at all spoilt, we were kept really grounded. It wasn’t like we could get everything we wanted unless it was our birthday” - Meera Ansari
Madiha Rizvi & Deeba Rizvi
Not many people know that this young reticent lady, Madiha Rizvi who makes powerful appearances once in a while in TV dramas is a star kid. She is the daughter of Deeba Rizvi, a leading film actress of her time. Her mother and the family were not supportive of her choice to join show-business but now that she has made a mark, Deeba feels satisfied.
“Ammi was different at home. She is very protective of us. People from the film industry used to visit our house and we, the kids were not allowed to come in front of them,” Madiha recalls. She thinks the only benefit of being a star kid is that you have an institute at home. For Deeba, film life and her personal space were always two separate zones and she never wanted to confuse the two.
“My work demanded some sacrifices but my mother was always there for me when I went for outdoor shoots similarly as I am there for my children,” Deeba opines.
The former film actress also believes that the secret to keep your children humble is to treat them like a mother rather than a ‘celebrity mom’.
The mother-daughter duo have many things in common such as relentless love for their passion. Deeba never wanted her daughter to act as she thinks the working environment has changed and not exactly good. Likewise, Madiha also doesn’t see her daughter make any future as an actress.
“Every woman is working in her own capacity these days. I support it and I feel a woman should be educated and be able to make a career but I’m not in favour of acting. As for Madiha, it was her dream wish and destiny,” Deeba says.
Both the Rizvis have another trait in common as Madiha states, “Ammi and I, both have anger management issues. Gussa bay inteha aata hai,” as Deeba agrees with her.
“I feel a woman should be educated but I’m not in favour of acting” - Deeba Rizvi
Zain Ahmed & Samina Ahmed
Samina and Zain are an artistic two-some for whom love for the arts is indefinite. Zain, an actor and a playwright by profession who directs plays at NAPA says, “Everything that I have learnt about theatre is through her. She has played a great part in making me who I am and that taught me a lot.”
Zain tells MAG that he and his mother share a common quirk.
“We’re both short-tempered.”
Samina, the veteran actress whose name is synonymous to Pakistan’s drama fraternity as a mother always knew how to manage time.
“Even with all the work at hand, I was always there for my children no matter what.”
Being a parent himself, Zain feels that “parents need to maintain a level of trust and comfort with their kids as it’s crucial.”
The dramatist feels sated in the way things were in his house as his mentor always maintained a level of trust with the two of them while being a great friend.
“My mother believes in enjoying as much as one can,” Zain reiterates how much of a fun person his mom is. However Samina interjects, recalling their trips in the wee hours, “Even if it were one in the morning we used to go out for dessert to have kulfi or faluda.”
The lady who has been the face of Pakistan’s showbiz since almost four decades was always a source of motivation for her children alongside being their caretaker. Zain shares a good laugh with MAG when asked if he shares any similarity with his son.
“Once I was busy writing at the theatre and he (his son) was hanging out there too. He suddenly jumped on to the stage and shouted, ‘aisay nahi hota, ab main batata hoon kaisey hota hai,” Zain reminisces with a wide grin on his face.
However, being the son of a woman who has been awarded the Pride of Performance Presidential award in performing arts, Zain feels it’s tough when people try to compare you with your parent and judge you accordingly. It can get really difficult to make a mark for yourself.”
“Everything that I have learnt about theatre is through her. She has played a great part in making me who I am and that taught me a lot” - Zain Ahmed
Ali Kazmi& Sahira Kazmi
Mid 80s was the era of the power couple, Sahira Kazmi and Rahat Kazmi. Though they haven’t been active lately, but the humble duo has brought up their children in a simple environment. Everybody loves how Ali Kazmi is such a gentleman. Clearly, he has his parents to thank for such a great upbringing!
“I feel very lucky and privileged to have my parents and husband always by my side. I had to choose between acting or direction as my children and husband were my biggest responsibility,” Sahira says talking about her days of yore.
“Rahat and I are very private people and we never publicised our children unless it was needed. We never made a point to put them into this field, like celebrities these days do. We hate the show-off culture and I have always taught them that a smile is more precious than moolah.”
Ali thinks that Sahira is a doting mother, but she has always been very focused and adamant about her work, while Sahira believes that her son was always confident about pursuing acting. Lost in memories, she recalls when 6-year-old Ali was shooting in PTV studios with her mom for Dhoop Kinaray.
“He was playing the character of young Dr. Ahmer [Rahat Kazmi] and the scene was a flashback with Arshad. I kept on calling him k beta ker lo ge? Hojayega? Arshad isko dekhlena… and suddenly Ali said ‘Amma aap ja kar ‘take’ karein’,” Sahira describes, recalling how naughty Ali was.
When asked about her greatest pleasure, the veteran actress accepts that she loves it when someone calls to praise her kids and tells her how well-mannered they are.
“As a mom, I'm very proud to see [my kids] pursuing what they love. We have to give them enough space to express themselves and make their dreams come true," Sahira notes.
Ali is very active and hyper like his mother and for sure he’s inherited that liveliness, boisterousness and wacky sense of humour from her. Sahira is indeed a child at heart as she herself puts it, “I can make children smile in a flash, no matter what age.”
Look at the hug, it says it all – for this hunky actor, his mother will always be the leading lady.
Our wonderful conversation came to an end with Ali’s note, “My salute to all the supermoms out there! If you hadn’t been there, we wouldn’t have been here. So let everyday be Mother’s Day!”
“I have always taught them that a smile is more precious than moolah” - Sahira Kazmi
Faisal Qureshi & Afshan Qureshi
Faisal Qureshi is a household name. From hosting TV shows to acting in drama serials, working in films to commercials – the ever-cheerful actor is also a caring son. A sneak-peek into his family life reveals a few secrets. His mother, Afshan Qureshi, has been associated with the media for a very long time. Talking about her son being an apple of the industry’s eye, she says, “I think one’s household makes a huge difference. I tried my best never to neglect him and he grew up seeing his elders treating everyone with a lot of respect.”
Her only advice to him was to treat his seniors and juniors with a lot of respect and to date he follows it.
She recalls a lot of things from his childhood. For instance, he used to be obsessed with matching his entire outfit, recalls Afshan.
“The shoes, pants, shirts, accessories… everything had to be of the same colour or else he would refuse to wear them,” she says.
“He was also very particular about neatness. He used to make a big deal if something was spilled on his clothes and wouldn’t rest till he changed it.” Faisal on the other hand thinks there are many perks of being a celebrity son.
“The best part is that you get so much exposure from such a young age. You also get to see your parents working so hard and juggling their professional and personal lives wonderfully. That really inspires you to push yourself to be the best version of yourself. The downside is definitely the expectations that you have to live up to,” he comments.
His mother thinks that the new corners in the industry today don’t respect senior artistes. She links it to their values.
“Don’t put unreal expectations on your children. Make them your friend so that they are comfortable speaking about anything in the world with you.”
Faisal believes that a mother’s love is unconditional and it is best to show how much you care for her in your actions throughout the year.
“The presence of a mother is most important in any person’s life. No matter how much we progress, mothers are irreplaceable,” he says.
Both the mother and son are ‘extremely’ loved people and this ‘extreme’ is in their genes as Faisal puts it, “there are a lot of habits that we both share. We both are very extreme in nature. If we are nice to someone, we go out of our ways. However, if we lose our temper then it takes very long for us to cool down. Another thing we have in common is that we are not picky about food at all. We are thankful for whatever we are served. Always!”
Make them your friend so that they are comfortable speaking about anything in the world with you.” - Afshan Qureshi