She made her debut with the role of wrestler Geeta Phogat in the biographical sports film Dangal (2016), which was the highest grossing Bollywood film in history (₹2,000 crore- $290 million).
The former actress posted the following status on her official Facebook page, which has since gone viral:
“5 years ago I made a decision that changed my life forever. As I stepped my foot in Bollywood, it opened doors of massive popularity for me. I started to become the prime candidate of public attention, I was projected as the gospel of the idea of success and was often identified as a role model for the youth. However, that’s never something that I set out to do or become, especially with regards to my ideas of success and failure, which I had just started to explore and understand.
“As I complete 5 years today, I want to confess that I am not truly happy with this identity i.e. my line of work. For a very long time now it has felt like I have struggled to become someone else. As I had just started to explore and make sense of the things to which I dedicated my time, efforts and emotions and tried to grab hold of a new lifestyle, it was only for me to realise that though I may fit here perfectly, I do not belong here. This field indeed brought a lot of love, support, and applause my way, but what it also did was to lead me to a path of ignorance, as I silently and unconsciously transitioned out of imaan (faith). While I continued to work in an environment that consistently interfered with my imaan, my relationship with my religion was threatened. As I continued to ignorantly pass through while I kept trying to convince myself that what I was doing is okay and isn’t really affecting me, I lost all the Barakah from my life. Barakat is word whose meaning isn’t just confined to happiness, quantity or blessing, it also focuses on the idea of stability, which is something I struggled with extensively.
“Quran and the guidance of Allah’s messenger (PBUH) became the weighing factor in my decision making and reasoning and it has changed my approach to life and its meaning.
“May Allah guide our boats to find its shore and help us to distinguish between truth and deception. May Allah makes us strengthen us in our Imaan and make us amongst the ones who engage in His remembrance and make our hearts firm and help us to remain steadfast. May Allah give us a better understanding of His wisdom and allow us to exhibit our efforts to alleviate doubt and error at individual levels and guide each other. May Allah cleanse our hearts from hypocrisy, arrogance and ignorance and rectify our intentions and grant us sincerity in speech and in our deeds. Ameen”