Dreams do come true: From prostitution to Bollywood scriptwriter, Shagufta Rafique is an inspiration
Bollywood is a unique world in its own right and has its charm spread across the world. Thousands are a part of the industry and some of their stories are rare and unique. Such is the story of a Bollywood celebrity who works behind the cameras and has delivered hits.
Shagufta Rafique, one of the most successful script writers working in India's Hindi film industry today, made her "debut performance" as an 11-year-old at a private party in the Indian city of Mumbai.
From facing abuse and poverty to dancing in bars and a brush with prostitution, it has been a long and difficult journey for Rafique.
She started her career at a tender age of 12 as a dancer in private parties. At the age of 17, she entered the world of prostitution and 10 years later, went on to become one of the most sought-after writers of the Hindi film industry.
There are a number of shocking facts about her life, one of which is that she does not even know who her biological mother is. Her childhood passed by depending on yesteryear actress Anwari Begum.
Anwari Begum gave her all the happiness and facilities but there soon came a time when she became absolutely penniless. And now it was Shagufta’s turn to return Anwari Begum the favour. She was merely 12 years old then.
To earn money, Shagufta started dancing at private parties. And when she turned 17, she indulged into prostitution and continued this for the next 10 years of her life to earn a living.
The 54-year-old has managed to re-script her life and emerge as one of the top screenwriters in Bollywood, with some of the industry's hits to her credits.
Much of her success, say her contemporaries, is because she herself went through the rough and tumble of life.
Rafique grew up in a family that was touched by the glamour of Hindi cinema and was also battered by its violent undercurrents.