Two days before the Supreme Court gave its verdict on Sanjay Dutt's long-pending case on illegal possession of arms, the actor was in an unusually jocular mood. It was to be one of the last interviews given by the star before yesterday's verdict found him guilty. The actor had been shooting at a stable in Goregaon and chatted quite freely, even revealing why people think he is not media-friendly.
Question: In an earlier interview you said - 'I don't want name or fame. I just want freedom...'
Sanjay Dutt: Yes! I was talking about my case, as you know. I just pray that the case gets over and I get my freedom. There are too many restrictions on me right now, including restrictions on travel. I have to take permissions. It's been on for 20 years now, which is a very long time. I wish and pray to God that either I get acquitted or I get free. Freedom is all that I want.
Question:How have you been coping?
Sanjay Dutt: Family always sticks by you along with a couple of friends who you can count on your fingertips. But I don't blame anyone. Lots of things have happened and I don't want to get into details.
Question:Has fatherhood made you more disciplined?
Sanjay Dutt: I think once you reach your 40s, things change a lot. A person matures and looks at life differently. Especially, after you have kids and a family. I have definitely changed for the better.
Question:Besides work, what else has been on your mind lately?
Sanjay Dutt: Besides work, it's health.
Question:Do your twins watch your films?
Sanjay Dutt: Shahraan and Iqra are too small to really understand but yes, sometimes they do. Sometimes they watch the shots and get excited.
Question:What has Trishala been up to these days?
Sanjay Dutt: Trishala has studied forensic science and I hope she sticks to that. I think it's a very honourable job where you are there with an agency, trying to help innocent people and I just hope she keeps to that. I can't travel, so I can't meet her that often. I think one day when I can, I will definitely meet her more often.
Question:Your resolution last year was to try and quit smoking. Any luck?
Sanjay Dutt: I had said I will try! To be honest I have to be really strong. One day I will really quit. I have already quit drinking.
Question: You are playing a cop in your new film.
Sanjay Dutt: Yes, my role is that of a police officer who comes to a certain town and fights for his rights.
Question:Munnabhai is also on the anvil.
Sanjay Dutt:Munnabhai is about to start and I am really looking forward to that. I have two more films with Rahul Aggarwal, which are yet to be announced.