When we think of the world of Bollywood and fashion we thinnk of galmor, parties, rich life style but there are murkier waters underground. Modeling is associated with a dark, ugly side, which remains unseen to most people outside. A glamorous lifestyle, high-profile parties and contacts that come as a perk with a model’s job do not always translate into money. Here is a story by CNN IBN exposing the ugly side of the fashion world.
Geetanjali Nagpal, a former super model who once walked the ramp with Sushmita Sen, is forced to lead a desolate life on the streets of Delhi. She now dresses in shabby clothes and begs for scraps for a living.
Daughter of a navy officer, Geetanjali studied at Mount Carmel School in Delhi and later graduated from Lady Sriram College.
Little is known about the former model’s personal life and the circumstances that led to her ruin. However, sources say she lost assignments and got into drugs to cope with stress.
Geetanjali studied fashion designing at South Delhi Polytechnic and ventured into modeling in 1990. She was living-in with a British man in Goa until recently.
Pic : Geetanjali Nagpal Model Turned Beggar
“Its actually very shocking to hear something like this and to witness it. I have been here for almost a decade now. There have been models here before me and I haven’t seen anybody’s life being staked like this,” says former model Mehr Bhasin.
“It’s really unfortunate. But don’t blame the modeling world for it. It could be the people she met, the circumstances she went through,” she adds.
Geetanjali’s parents, who live in Delhi’s Lajpat Nagar area, have disowned her, sources told CNN-IBN.
When contacted, they said, they would only accept her back if she gave up drugs and went into a rehab to be a “refined human being”.
“An actress or a popular model cannot go and work in a shop or in a call center like other people if she loses her job. And it’s a high maintenance lifestyle that these people have to support,” says psychologist Dr Chabria.
Although drugs and alcohol aren’t necessarily a part of everyone’s life in the modeling world, but most take it up because the “stressful” job demands it.
“Drugs is a reality but it has nothing to do with modeling as such. Everybody is trying to aim higher and get better. These jobs are so stressful that people get lured into addictions as a release,” says Bhasin.
“And its really sad that they don’t have a strong background to fall back on.”
People think that once they become a model, the world will be at their feet. For most, getting assignments is getting a celebrity status. But that does not last forever.
“When people come to the modeling industry they start thinking it’s the end all and be all. But when they stop getting work, they don’t know where to turn. They sometimes can’t cope with it,” says Bhasin.
So, is it the psychological breakdown that pushes one to such extremes?
Psychiatrist Anjali Chabria says, “One will have to spend time with her to find out what has happened. It is difficult to say what came first. Whether the drugs came first or the breakdown.”
Models also live under high stress. “Modeling like other careers has lot of stress associated with it. One has to constantly look good and feel good. What follows is anorexia, alcohol and sometimes drugs. These things are synonymous with the glamour world. Once you become successful in what you are doing, then it becomes difficult for you to take up something else,” Chabria adds.
What about help after one has gotten into such a situation?
“The kind of clothes that are being showcased these days and the way models are expected to look, skinny and hit on stage. I think it doesn’t goes well with the Indian society,” says Bhasin.
“The impression that skinny is beautiful must change,” she concludes.
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