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Alia Bhatt trains in self defence and Kashmiri accent for Meghna Gulzar's Raazi


Bhatt will be seen playing a 20 year old Kashmiri girl, who marries a Pakistani army officer. 

Our Correspondent

Alia Bhatt is playing the challenging role of a 20-year-old Kashmiri girl married to a Pakistani army officer in Meghna Gulzar’s next, Raazi. She is leaving no stones unturned to prepare for the role. This includes reading Harinder S Sikka’s novel Calling Sehmat, on which the film is based, and working on her dialect. 

Reading the book has helped her strengthen her character. “It has helped me add extra layers to my character. The script is a lovely adaptation of the book, which is extensive; it has a lot of stories. I just wanted to get the backstory right in my head,” she said while talking to a daily. 

Although Alia has played young characters throughout her career, it’s a different scene this time. “She’s a 20-year-old girl so I have an idea about what she will be like but the film is based in a certain time period so the character needed a different approach,” she added. 

Alia is required to speak Urdu in the film. But owing to the location of the story, this won’t be the kind of Urdu we generally hear in films. “I’ve been working on the dialect which is important to the narrative. I will be speaking Urdu but there’s a Kashmiri twang to the girl’s diction which I have to perfect. I’m also learning self-defence techniques as I have some action sequences, which is a first for me. I’m watching old movies off a list that Meghna has given me,” added Alia. 

Apart from studying the emotional side of the character she has also had to work on her mannerism. “For this film, I’m also working towards looking more feminine since girls in that era had a certain shyness about them,” she said. “It was inherent in their body language which I feel I lack immensely,” Alia confessed. 

Kashmir has been in the news since it is a politically sensitive region. But Alia had no qualms in playing the role of a girl who marries a Pakistani army officer. “It’s a true and novel story to be a part of, so I had no reservations,” she said.