1. You are one of those strong personalities who broke all kinds of skin stereotypes set by the conservative portion of our society. From going to doctors to travelling all over India, please tell us about your transformation.

Ans. Vitiligo started showing when I was 6 years old. For the next many years, we went from doctor to doctor and tried different treatments. I had to follow a strict diet and my whole life revolved around curing vitiligo and making my skin look “normal”, even though there was no guaranteed cure for it. When I grew up, I wondered why I was spending all this time, energy, and money to cure a condition that wasn’t even hurting me! It wasn’t worth it. Once I accepted myself, life became a lot easier and I was a lot happier.

2. Did you ever feel that Vitiligo is causing hindrance in your travel life? Also, is there any strong incident that happened to you on any of your trips that you would like to share with our readers?

Ans. Not really, the only hindrance is having to wear sunblock and deal with people staring at me. But it doesn’t annoy me anymore. I do remember an incident. I was at a wharf in Auckland when a guy came up to me and asked “Is that Vitiligo?”. I said “yes” to which he replied, “It’s cool!”. It made me laugh because after all the experiences I have had, I was expecting him to ask a question or suggest a doctor.
3. You have travelled to so many places in the past. Do you find any difference in people’s behavior in India and outside regarding Vitiligo?
Ans. Though I have travelled a lot in India, but outside of India, so far, I’ve just travelled to New Zealand twice. In India, strangers will approach you to tell you about doctors and home remedies. While some people try to help you and make you feel better, they don’t realise that they’re doing the opposite. But things like that didn’t happen to me in New Zealand.
4. Being a content creator, and an avid traveller, you are challenging the status quo with each passing day. So, what is the motivatiion behnd it?
Ans. I have a passion for Indian handicrafts and fashion. Also, I love the diversity in our culture as it has so much to offer. It’s quite sad how we are blindly getting into fast fashion and letting our diversity die. This is what inspired me to start showcasing Indian fashion and handicrafts through social media. I occasionally share my vitiligo experiences as well, not just to help those with Vitiligo but also to spread awareness among people who do not have Vitiligo.
5. Are you a mountain person or a beach person? What are your favorite destinations in India and abroad?
Ans. I’m more of a beach person but I do travel to the mountains a lot. My favorite destinations in India are Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Ladakh, and our village in Rajasthan. I loved the hot water beach and the Wairakei Terrace hot pools in New Zealand.

6. Since you love visiting your village in Rajasthan, you have witnessed the rural life and its uniqueness. So do you feel that it is necessary to promote village tourism in India so that people can visit and experience the rural culture?

Ans. Village life is very peaceful and laid back. I think it gives us a good break from the chaos of the cities. It’s like a detox and has a lot to teach us. Village people are very simple,they’re happy with what they have, and are closer to nature. My favourite part is visiting our farm in the evening, and sleeping on the rooftop under the stars. Once you experience village life, you’ll want to go back. We should definitely promote rural tourism. Every village in India has a different culture, cuisines and festivals. It is a huge pool of untapped resources.
7. You’re an inspiration for so many people out there. What’s the message you want to give to our readers?
Ans. We need to have a broad concept of beauty, a more inclusive one. We need to stop comparing ourselves with others and appreciate what we have. Beauty is subjective. What is considered beautiful by one culture, society or individual, might not be liked by others. Considering only a certain type of feature, colour or shape isn’t right?

We see these flawless faces on TV, in advertisements, and now on social media too. Also, we are well aware that those flawless faces aren’t real. There’s an entire team of make-up artists, photographers, stylists that got them to look perfect. We cannot let all that affect us. We’re supposed to be the way we are. It’s our imperfections that make us, us. They make us unique. Why struggle to look like everyone else when we can be unique?