Reality bites for Payal

Actress denies romantic links with Rahul Mahajan on Bigg Boss


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Published: Tue 14 Oct 2008, 8:20 PM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 3:43 PM

Only Rahul Mahajan could get close to her, kiss her and scold her in season two of reality show Bigg Boss, but actress Payal Rohatgi has denied any romantic involvement with him after her eviction from the show.

"Rahul is not my boyfriend, he is my friend," Payal maintained.

In August, Rahul, son of the late Bharatiya Janata Party leader and former union minister Pramod Mahajan, formally parted from his wife Shweta after a Gurgaon court passed a decree on their mutual divorce petition. His closeness with Payal was an alleged reason for the break-up.

But Payal, who was evicted from the reality show recently, maintains that "Rahul is only a good friend".

Viewers were witness to their intimacy on Bigg Boss when they were assigned the task of playing volleyball in a swimming pool.

Commenting upon their physical proximity on the show, she said: "The pool was six feet deep and I'm only five feet six inches tall. I needed someone to shift me around and hold me in the pool. I was more comfortable with Rahul because I know him. We have partied and have had dinners together.

"I couldn't let others like Debojit (Saha), Ashutosh (Kaushik) and Raja (Chaudhary) come as close. After all they are men," she said.

Payal was criticised by her inmates for her closeness to Rahul, her cat fights with item girl Sambhavna Seth, wearing a bikini on the show and constantly wearing make-up.

Sambhavna alleged that Payal is "fake" and that she used to backstab people on the show.

But Payal denies her allegations saying: "I was very neutral. I was not there to make friends for life. I just wanted to be cordial and nice to people so that we could live together in peace. So there is no question of having backstabbed anyone. It would have been so had I nominated Rahul, who is a good friend," Payal said.

As far as being called "fake" is concerned, she said: "I was there to gain visibility for the benefit of my career. If I dabbed on make-up to look good on the show, why are people complaining?

"She (Sambhavna) has said that I used to wake up at six in the morning to touch up and then used to sleep again. But then why was this footage not shown? It would have made for a juicy shot. 'Bigg Boss' was not a house, it was a house-like situation and being an actor, I had to take care of the way I looked on screen," Payal said.

"I am very happy to be back in the real world. I was there to gain visibility and show the other side of personality and I have been successful in doing that. People had only seen the glamorous side of Payal Rohtagi, but now they know that I even cry," said Payal who is now looking forward to getting some "lead roles in good films".

Payal was seen in films Dhol and Corporate. In Madhur Bhandarkar's critically acclaimed Corporate, she danced to the popular item song O Sikander.

Now she is looking forward to her next film Dil Kabaddi, in which she will be seen with Soha Ali Khan, Konkona Sen Sharma and Irrfan Khan, among others.

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