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Deepika Padukone is producing a biopic on an acid attack survivor / Go back

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Deepika Padukone is adding another feather to her cap.

The actress will be donning the producer's cap for Meghna Gulzar's upcoming directorial (of Raazi fame); not only that, Padukone will also be acting in the flick as acid attack survivor, Laxmi Agarwal.

According to Indian Express, while talking about her role, Deepika shared: “When I heard this story, I was deeply moved as it’s not just one of violence but of strength and courage, hope and victory. It made such an impact on me, that personally and creatively, I needed to go beyond and so the decision to turn producer,”

Laxmi Agarwal was attacked at the age of 15 and she had to undergo several surgeries. Later, she took up the job of helping acid attack survivors and promoted campaigns to stop acid attacks; she even received the US State Department’s International Women of Courage Award in 2014 from the former First Lady of United States, Michelle Obama.

Meghna Gulzar feels Laxmi’s story needs to be told to bring awareness in the society.

“Using Laxmi’s story as a lens, we are attempting to explore these aspects and the consequences of acid-related violence in our society. This’s what makes this must-told story relevant. Awareness is the first step towards change,” she explained.

About casting Deepika as Laxmi in her film, Meghna added, “I was instinctively convinced that Deepika would do justice to the character and the story. Also, her physicality matched with what I’d imagined for Laxmi’s character. I’m grateful and encouraged that she was so spontaneous in her decision to do the film.”

Agarwal was attacked in 2005 at age 15, by a 32-year-old man whose advances she had rejected. She has also advocated against acid attacks through gathering signatures for a petition to curb acid sales and taking that cause to the Indian Supreme Court. Her petition led the Supreme Court to order the central and state governments to regulate the sale of acid, and the Parliament to make prosecutions of acid attacks easier to pursue.

She is also the director of Chhanv Foundation, a NGO dedicated to help the survivors of acid attacks in India and received a 2014 International Women of Courage award by former US First Lady Michelle Obama.

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