October 27, 1976 |
Faizabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
|Spouse(s)||Dr. Sonu Ahluwalia (2002-2011 divorced)|
Early life and background
Pooja Batra was born to Ravi Batra, an army colonel who was wounded in the 1971 war between India and Pakistan. Her mother, Neelam Batra was a former Miss India participant in 1971. She did her schooling at Kendriya Vidyalaya Number-1,Faridabad,Haryana, Kendriya Vidyalaya ONGC Agartala No. 2 at Tripura, Kendriya Vidyalaya (Army) Belgaum where she enjoyed sports, debates and plays. She was a good athlete who competed in the 200 and 400 meter dash.
She majored in Economics at the Fergusson College, Pune. She has two twin brothers. She was Miss Asia Pacific (3rd runners up) in 1993, and at that time she was 18 years old.
At a young age, she started modeling as a part-time job. She was best known for her Liril soap commercial. She was the first Indian face to launch and be a spokesperson for Head and Shoulders in India. As a model she has participated in over 250 events and ad campaigns. She shot to fame when she was crowned Miss India Asia-Pacific in 1993. She went on to become one of the top models in India. She walked the ramp for over 250 fashion shows in India and overseas. She is an ambassador for Parag Sarees. She has played the lead role in over 20 films. One of her films, Taj Mahal, a historical epic, was shown at the Cannes film festival in 2004. Pooja turned down many offers to complete her education before signing a contract with the Virasat Film Studio. She is the life member of International Film And Television Club of Asian Academy Of Film & Television, Noida. In 1995 she did a cameo in a Tamil film called Aasai. She is from Mhow, near Indore M.P.
Batra worked in Malayalam films, the majority of them with megastars Mohanlal and Mammootty. She did two Tamil films. She acted in theater and toured North America, which got her considerable acclaim. She recently appeared at the 2009 Academy Awards in Los Angeles, where she reunited with her Virasat costar, Anil Kapoor.
Batra has volunteered time and money to charitable causes including AIDS (Mukti Foundation), homeless children, the Bombay Police Department and injured soldiers in the Kashmir war.
She did pro bono work in the film, My Little Devil (Bas Yari Rakho) subtitled in Hindi, English and French to raise funds for the poor children in India. The film was co-produced by NFDC-La Fete (Canada) and directed by Gopi Desai. The film was screened at the 24th Annual Montreal World Film Festival, 2000; Chicago International Children's Film Festival, 2000; 10th Annual Philadelphia Film Festival of World Cinema, 2001 and the Indian Film Festival in Malaysia, 2005.
Awards and nominations
- 1997: Winner - Sansui Screen Award for Best Supporting Actress, for Virasat
- 1997: Nominated - Filmfare Award for the Most Promising Newcomer, for Virasat
- 2006: Nominated - Sansui Screen Award for the Best Actress, for Taj Mahal - An Eternal Love Story
|1999||Megham||Col. Thampuran's wife, swati||Malayalam|
|Haseena Maan Jaayegi||Pooja Verma||Hindi|
|2000||Bas Yaari Rakho||Pratibha||Hindi|
|Kahin Pyaar Na Ho Jaaye||Mona||Hindi|
|Dil Ne Phir Yaad Kiya||Sonia Chopra||Hindi|
|Kuch Khatti Kuch Meethi||Savitri||Hindi|
|Jodi No.1||Casino Dancer||Hindi|
|Nayak: The Real Hero||Laila||Hindi|
|2003||Talaash: The Hunt Begins||Kamini||Hindi|
|2005||Taj Mahal: An Eternal Love Story||Noor Jahan||Hindi|
|2011||Hum Tum Shabana||Cameo Appearance||Hindi|