Actor Asha Parekh had once spoken about why she decided to quit acting. In an old interview, Asha had said that she was approached for the role of a mother but it didn’t make her happy. Recalling a certain film, Asha said that the male actor would arrive on set in the evening for a shot scheduled in the morning and she didn’t want to put herself through it. Speaking about actor Amitabh Bachchan, Asha said that in his ‘second innings’ he is cast as ‘the central character’. Asha added that she doesn’t get ‘these sort of opportunities’. (Also Read | Asha Parekh features on magazine cover, says she has ‘absolutely no regrets’ about not getting married. See pic)
Asha made her acting debut as an adult with Dil Deke Dekho (1959) opposite Shammi Kapoor. Earlier, Asha had started her career as a child artist with the name Baby Asha Parekh and featured in Maa (1952) and Baap Beti (1954). Asha and Amitabh featured together in the action thriller Kaalia (1981), written and directed by Tinnu Anand. The film also stars Parveen Babi, Kader Khan, Pran, Amjad Khan, among others.
In an interview with news agency PTI, Asha said, “Work started coming to me less, people approached me for the role of a mother. I did a few (referring to playing mother) but I wasn’t happy doing that. I wasn’t convinced that what I was doing was right. I remember there was one film where I (felt) tortured because the hero would come at 6:30 in the evening for a 9:30 morning shift. It wasn’t working out for me.”
She also added, “There was no way I could put myself through all of this. I didn’t want to wait from morning till evening to give a shot. I decided I didn’t want to work anymore. It wasn’t a difficult decision as such. You have to accept certain situations in life. I am ageing so I should take it gracefully. Mr Bachchan has got a second innings. He is lucky, blessed by God. People make films where he is the central character. We don’t get these sort of opportunities. If I get something like that, I would definitely like to work.”
Asha featured in many movies throughout her career such as Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai (1961), Teesri Manzil and Do Badan (1966), Kati Patang (1970), Caravan (1971), and Main Tulsi Tere Aangan Ki (1978) among others. In the 90s, Asha featured in fewer films. She was seen in Professor Ki Padosan and Bhagyawan (1993), Ghar Ki Izzat (1994) and Andolan (1995).
After she quit acting, Ahsa became a television director with the Gujarati serial Jyoti. Under her production company, Akruti, Asha produced serials like Palash ke Phool, Baaje Payal, Kora Kagaz and Dal Mein Kaala. In 2008, she was a judge on the reality show Tyohaar Dhamaaka on 9X.