Touching Lives - Parull Mahaajan talks with You & I

Parull Mahaajan is a contender who wears many hats at the same time. She’s a lawyer and interior designer specialising in sustainable designs, and an advisor for the Delhi Literature Festival. In addition, she is a committed social activist working for multiple causes like environmental conservation, Swachh Bharat, khadi promotion, the government’s ‘Make in India’ and women empowerment. Altruistic by nature, Parull comes from a family of bureaucrats that believes in serving people. She opens up about her fervour for philanthropy and conserving nature.

You seem to be quite the multitasker. How do you juggle your various activities and interests?
‘Balance’ is my mantra to succeed in managing multiple activities/professions. Most of my professional activities have a synergy with each other, so it becomes easier to manage them.
As I have graduated in English honours, and literature has always interested me, I like being a part of literature festivals. Studying law infused me with the sense of duty to protect and safeguard not only my own, but also the interests of society. I was so motivated to make a difference that I took up courses in textiles and interior design with a special focus on green and sustainable designs. While pursuing these, I realised the importance and richness of our cultural heritage. Hence to preserve and promote it, I started working closely with Indian weavers and artisans, and facilitated them in getting their rightful share and place in society. As all these go hand in hand, it is not difficult to manage them together.

How challenging is designing sustainable interiors?
Not very. It might be more expensive in terms of raw materials and execution, but the benefits are manifold. If a client understands and appreciates the concept of eco-friendliness, he will invariably opt for it. Sustainability is not only beneficial for the environment and society, but also for individuals.

What are the qualities that an empowered woman should possess?
I would like to reiterate that balance is the secret. No matter how independent a woman is, she should always retain a sense of balance in her personal, professional and social lives. On the flipside, although an empowered woman might feel she is equivalent to a man, I feel that there are some qualities which God has blessed only womenfolk with, which are extremely important for running a family and raising children. If a woman must give a little more than a man, it should not seem like a threat to her empowerment.

What inspired you to achieve what you have today?
I feel that due to Guruji’s blessings and my family’s unconditional love and support, I could achieve what I have today. I draw inspiration from my father who, being a bureaucrat, has always served people selflessly, and I have grown up seeing that. Also, following my Guruji’s preaching that we should help others, I try to do my best to help people.

What is the most exciting partof what you do?
I get several opportunities to give back to society, and that excites me. The most beautiful feeling in this world is making a difference in somebody’s life. I feel that if we are fortunate enough to be blessed with an abundance of everything in life, we should give it back to the universe in some way or the other. Helping those less fortunate and adding value to their lives is the best way to
do it.

What are your plans on the professional front?
I never plan anything for myself because I believe God has his plans for all of us. I go with the flow. Taking it up as God’s plan for me, I do whatever comes my way.

How do you unwind after a busy day?
I spend time with my family and listen to music. Also, I love to shop, as it is the perfect relaxation therapy for me!      --- as told to Sumana