As the goodwill ambassador of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Wildlife Trust of India, Dia Mirza uses her voice and credibility to create awareness about conservation approaches and conscious lifestyle and promote responsible tourism. In a conversation with Travel + Leisure India & South Asia the actor-activist gets candid about the roadblocks on her way and life-altering experiences.
Photography Assistant: Abhishek Verma
Hair and Makeup Assistant: Surbhi Maheshwari
Editorial Assistant: Ralan Kithan
Dia Mirza, the award-winning actor and producer, sustainability champion, the goodwill ambassador of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Wildlife Trust of India, and an ardent environmentalist, effortlessly leaves an impact on you, every time you meet her. If you are among her 5.4 mn followers on Instagram, you know how passionately she battles for the environment, speaks about climate change, and stresses on the importance of making mindful choices. So, when we put together our digital sustainability special, Dia Mirza was the obvious choice for the cover.
On the day of the shoot, she arrived promptly for her shots with her bottle of water in place. She pointed out, that her “travelling bottle” as she calls it goes everywhere with her. This is something she does to spread awareness about the ban of single-use plastic. She says, “I feel so happy when I see people carry metal bottles at airports and railway stations now. When I started carrying my own bottle, there were few people doing it. So, you feel good that more people are realising that they shouldn’t be wasteful.”
Taking up the mission to protect and nurture the planet, comes naturally to Dia Mirza. She shares that having grown up in an environment where she was made to realise that wasteful practices and disrespect for the resources was leading us down the path of destruction, prompted her into action. She started off by working with programmes that were pivoted around the theme of conservation, sustainability, and wildlife protection. “When you learn, the more you do and the more you start implementing changes in your own life,” she says.
Post the cover shoot, we sat down for a quick chat on her sustainable goals, the conscious practices she follows in her everyday routine, what slow travel means to her, and how she promotes responsible tourism.
Excerpts from the interview with Dia Mirza