Rafiath Rashid Mithila is not just a name, she is the epitome of beauty, talent and grace. As an artist she has proven herself with perseverance and passion on screen. She has become the symbol of empowerment through her spontaneous journey of life; smoothly maintaining both her career and family single handedly. Mithila is a trademark of complete elegance and charisma; she plays each and every role of her real life with loyalty and consistency. In this exclusive interview with Star Showbiz, Mithila talks about her life, career, family, inspirations and much more!
Thank you very much for your time. How do you manage to pull off your family, professional life and acting career so smoothly?
Sometimes it's overwhelming to keep an eye on everything in life and sometimes it's quite stressful. I prioritize and compartmentalize my duties. This is something I have been doing for a very long time. My daughter tops my priority list where my two other jobs come later. I have been working as a development professional at BRAC International for the last ten years. I am very passionate about my work and after my daughter I give it priority. Then comes my acting career. I love acting and I want to stick to it as long as possible. In order to maintain these three responsibilities, I have to think through and blend in. Since my job requires a lot of travelling, I have accommodated my acting schedule as per my office routine.
Tell us something about your first experience of working in a short film.
It has been a wonderful experience for me. Since it was my first joint production with Kolkata, I was enthralled and anxious at the same time. The name of the short film is Mukhomukhi and is directed by the eminent Partho Sen. I have worked opposite to Gourav Chakrabarti (son of Sabyasachi Chakrabarty) in this film. This was my first visit to Kolkata as well. In the film I played the role of a Bangladeshi filmmaker who travels Kolkata for her work and meets Gourav. This is where things start taking twists and turns. The story steadily progresses through eventful situations. I am very hopeful about this film. I hope my viewers like it too!
You will be doing a programme on early childhood development with Radio Shadhin. How do you think this programme will help the parents to create a constructive environment for their children?
This is a fresh initiative in a country like Bangladesh. It will be a thirteen-episode programme where experts, practitioners and scholars will be talking about children's physical and mental health. We will be discussing the stages and milestones of a child's development. People of our country seem to be less informed about the pedagogy of child raising. The programme hopes to raise parental awareness and guide parents in creating a positive environment to facilitate a child's upbringing. The programme will be sponsored by BRAC and will be broadcasted from March. We have been preparing infographics, tips and video contents for our audience. We will upload the recorded version of the 13 episodes on YouTube so that parents can watch it in their convenient time.
You seem to be less present in the music industry these days? Why is that so?
I initiated my singing career with song writing. I prefer composing songs than singing. I learnt Nazrul Sangeet when I was little but I never tried singing it. Moreover, maintaining family and career simultaneously has become a challenge these days. That is why, other than some of the title songs of my own TV dramas, I can't focus on singing lately.
Have you ever considered working in movies?
After working in Mukhomukhi, I am actually thinking about doing some feature films. I don't know if I can manage time for movies now. I have always said no to the movie offers I receive because of my office work. Since it's a full-time job, it becomes very difficult for me to secure time for movies. I am still not sure if I can manage but I definitely want to work in one movie at least.
You have been working as the Head of Early Childhood Development and Girls' Education at BRAC International. How do you think the women in the rural/suburban areas are responding to empowerment in a patriarchal society?
If we consider women's economic empowerment, then yes, women have progressed. Women are now working outside home, they are being aided by microloans and entrepreneurial ideas. But the social empowerment with gender role is still absent. One of the crucial reasons for this is the lack of confidence and self-dependency women have. They still undermine their capability as women collectively and depend on their male counterpart for decision making. Even if the family runs with the wife's money, the man controls the obligation of decision making. The concept of 50-50 sharing is absent in the households of suburban and rural areas. Women are overburdened with work both in and outside their houses.
Your sister Mim Rashid recently got married to Iresh Zaker. Do you have any special message for them?
I want them to be blessed and happy. All my best wishes are with them. It's a new journey with a new beginning of life. I hope they find the best in each other and nurture the moments of their togetherness.
Is there anything else you want to share with your fans?
I want people to be more empathetic towards media personnel. I want my fans to be more constructive and understanding before commenting on our decisions. I am thankful to them because without their love and support I wouldn't have been here. Lastly, I want people to avoid negativity. I am a very positive person and I encourage positivity.