Patna: Critically acclaimed Bollywood star Vidya Balan was in Patna on Friday to participate in a debate sponsored by the Patna edition of Hindustan, a daily newspaper.

Urging people to use their right to vote, Balan said that there was absolutely no excuse for anyone who did not cast his or her ballot in favor of a candidate of their choice.

“Don’t use your finger just to point faults in others. Use your finger to cast your vote. Until you see the black ink spot on your finger, all other things don’t matter,” Balan, who has acted in nearly three dozen films like Parineeta, Lage Raho Munna Bhai, Om Shanti Om, Paa, Ishqiya, No One Killed Jessica, Kahani, and Kahani 2, said.

Emphasizing the importance of free and fair elections and the right to vote in a democracy, Balan said that it did not matter if one’s favorite candidate won the election or not but the fact that millions of people take time off from their daily routine and go to the polling booths, sometimes after much pain, to exercise their voting power was the strongest pillar of any democracy that must be encouraged and cherished.

“Simply complaining about the system does no good until you understand your responsibility and exercise your power to change the system,” she said at the “Nari Ke Haq-Haqook” program at Gyan Bhawan in Patna.

Actress Vidya Balan at Patna Airport on Friday.

She also briefly talked about her acting career and how she managed to survive in a very competitive world despite initial hurdles and disappointments.

Crediting another Bollywood phenomenon Madhuri Dixit for her dream to act in films, Balan said that she tied marital knot at the peak of her career despite many people advising her against it.

“I didn’t listen to them and did what my heart told me to do and I am glad I did follow my instincts and not got swayed by others,” she said.

Balan, who was in Patna for the second time in her life, praised the city and said she was very impressed by the artwork on Patna walls that could be seen from the Airport to all the way to the Gyan Bhawan.

“I have made a video of my trip and will soon be uploading it on my social media pages,” she said.

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