Playback singer and former B4U VJ, Khushboo Grewal’s life changed when her little superstar, Shanaya, was born

BY CHARLENE FLANAGAN
SHOOT CO-ORDINATION BY SANIA DHIRWANI
PHOTOGRAPHS BY AKSHAY KULKARNI
HAIR & MAKE-UP BY SACHIN GATHE

HAILING from a small town, Khushboo never imagined that one day she’d move to Mumbai to try and break into showbiz. Born and raised in the beautiful city of Chandigarh, she comes from a long line of successful doctors; her parents even ran a thriving private nursing home. “I sometimes think of myself as the black sheep of my family. My mother is a gynaecologist, my father an anaesthetist, my sister is a dentist, sister-in-law a clinical psychologist, and brother-in-law an orthopaedic surgeon. Every member of my family is connected to medicine,” she says. However, with a rather happy-go-lucky mindset, Khushboo never felt forced to follow in their footsteps.

She attributes her determination and drive to her upbringing. Her mother was a workaholic with very strong work ethics, and Khushboo and her sister were taught to be self-sufficient, no matter what the situation. If that’s not all, they were given liberties many young girls weren’t afforded. “We could wear sleeveless clothes if we wanted to. We were never questioned if we were friends with boys. We were raised to be independent thinkers and encouraged to make our own decisions, and deal with their subsequent consequences, if we made mistakes. We were taught to take responsibility for our actions,” she says. It’s no surprise, then, that Khushboo met her husband, and the love of her life, Bipin Grewal, at the age of 18. A hardcore business man with various ventures in Delhi and Chandigarh, Bipin decided to leave it all behind, and support Khushboo when she decided to pursue a career in the entertainment business. “If, after my parents, there is anyone who could support me and push me to do my best, it’s Bipin. He gave up everything so that I could pursue my dreams. From the very beginning, he has encouraged me to follow my heart because he’s never wanted me to live with any regrets, and I know, even after all these years, that I couldn’t find a better partner,” she admits, affectionately.

AWAY WE GO
After tying the knot, Khushboo and Bipin decided to leave the comfort of their life in Chandigarh, and move to the big city. Khushboo began finding work in showbiz, and Bipin took up a job which paid him a rather modest salary. After nine years of hard work, and a blissful marriage, Khushboo decided to try her hand at singing. Of course, the real reason was because she wanted to start a family, and working in the film industry meant long, gruelling hours. That’s not something she wanted to put her family through. She was turing 30 and she felt emotionally ready to have a baby. However, Bipin was a little sceptical because he didn’t think they were fi nancially stable, didn’t have a house of their own yet, and realised that it was a big responsibility, one that would alter their lives forever.

After discussing their plans with family and friends, they were overwhelmed with the encouragement and support, and that’s when Bipin realised he was ready to be a father. “It was the most amazing thing to hear, that we would be starting a new chapter in our lives,” recalls Khushboo, tearfully. “The beauty of it was that Bipin was as eager to start a family with me, and I didn’t need to convince him. Bipin and I have always had an open and honest relationship, and we’ve always communicated with each other. Having a baby means sharing an equal responsibility in the upbringing of a baby, and I believe it’s never okay to have to try and force someone, especially when they’re not ready,” she says.

Khushboo and Bipin announced they were pregnant immediately after the release of her first single, Pink Lips. The news came as a bit of a surprise to most people, considering her career was only  just taking off. However, nothing could bring the happy couple down. “I think God had his own plans for us. Everyone told us that it would take some time, after we began planning for a baby, to see any results. Naturally, we were pleasantly surprised when we conceived so quickly,” Khushboo says, smiling.

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