She is 70 and recovering from a fractured leg. Yet, veteran choreographer Saroj Khan is the cynosure of all eyes as she exudes infectious enthusiasm and humility that is so characteristic of this veteran. The occasion is the Cine Dancers’ Association announcement of India’s first female choreographer Saroj Khan as their Brand Ambassador. Present were Cine Dancers’Association’s president Nilesh Paradkar, President Zahid Shaikh, Gen Sec Ravi Kanwar, Dispute Chairman Al Fahim Surani (Raj) & Managing Committee of Association.
Saroj Khan who turned choreographer who started her career in her teens is overwhelmed by the gesture of the CDA. She said, “I began my career as a group dancer and I still have my CDA card. As the association’s Brand Ambassador, I would want it to become the biggest association of the film industry. I was 10 year old when I began dancing in films and now it’s time to get back to the roots and provide all the facilities which I didn’t get. I promise to do good work and guide them in the direction and get the respect the dancers deserve in the film industry.” Saroj Khan also said that the association will implement free education for dancers’ girl children.
Khan is also of the opinion that stage shows should be organised to raise funds for the seniors so that the money can be used as pension for those who are living a retired life and need money for survival and Rs 100 from every dancer’ daily income be kept side for the pension fund to secure the future of the dancers.”
Khan will also be approving girls and boys wanting to become dancers. She said, “Whoever is able to do both Indian and Western can be a professional dancer and will be welcomed into the association. I will not tolerate any excuses about not knowing a particular dance form. At the same time, if they need help and coaching, we will provide them classes as well.”
Khan believes that giving is living and is still teaching dancing to students and newcomers. She also has a piece of advice to seniors – “don’t sit, keep dancing and rehearsing, and keep yourself fit; work will come to you.”
But there are many who are doing household works and working and maids and facing tough time in the film industry. Chairman of Cine Dancers Association, Nilesh Paradkar averred that “this coming together to make CDA a strong and better association. We want to make sure that deserved on time payments are made to our members as well.”.