Their first jobs

Before they became household stars, many of Indian televisions hottest names were your average Rohits, or Smritis. We take you down some television stars’ memory lanes, to their first jobs.

My first job was right after college. I worked as a salesman at a Zodiac (an apparel company) store. A friend of mine had put in a word for me and I found myself selling shirts. There was no interview or anything. I was good at my job. My boss knew me as someone who would sell a guy two shirts when he had planned to buy one! I earned Rs 750 per month. At that time, Rs 750 was a huge amount. I took my girlfriend out for a good meal! — Rohit Roy

I landed my first job when I was 16. It was a summer job, which fetched me Rs 250 per day. I was selling herbal cosmetic products, called Naturants, at a roadside stall in the sweltering Delhi heat. I could hang onto my job for five days only because there were so many kids wanting to take up summer jobs then. From my salary, I gave Rs 100 to all the elders in my family — my grandmother, mother and father. It was quite sentimental. With the rest of the money, I bought gifts for my sisters and a dupatta for my mother. That was all I could afford. — Smriti Irani

My first earning was for the film Nache Mayuri. It was not a huge amount, as it was my first film. For me, the joy and pride was in the fact that I received the cheque from (filmmaker) Ramoji Rao. — Sudha Chandran

My father was the secretary of Lions Club, which organised annual functions. At 13, I took part in a dance competition in one of those functions and won. The prize money was Rs 3,000. That was my first earning. I was on top of the world. I did not buy anything for my parents — just selfishly spent the entire amount on me. — Poonam Goel

My first job was at 16. I was working at a supermarket in Vancouver. It was a four-hour-a-day job. I worked for a month and earned $200. I didn’t even wait to get the cheque encashed. I signed at the back of my cheque and got $200 from my mother instead, and went shopping. I was a very selfish 16-year-old, and spent the entire amount on myself. — Neeru Bajwa