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Dia Mirza (born 9 December 1981) is an Indian model, actress, producer, social worker and beauty queen who won the Miss Asia Pacific 2000 title. She made her acting debut with Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein (2001).

Dia Mirza
Dia Mirza photoshoot for World Environment Day.jpg
Mirza during photoshoot for World Environment Day, June 2018
Dia Handrich

(1981-12-09) 9 December 1981 (age 37)[1][2]
ResidenceMumbai, Maharashtra, India
OccupationActress, Model, Film producer, social Activist
Years active1999-present
TitleMiss Asia Pacific 2000
Femina Miss India Asia Pacific 2000
Sahil Sangha (m. 2014–2019)
Beauty pageant titleholder
Femina Miss India 2000
(Femina Miss India Asia Pacific 2000)
(Miss Beautiful Smile)
Miss Asia Pacific 2000
(Miss Close-Up Smile)
(Miss AVON)

She subsequently featured in films including Dus (2005), Lage Raho Munnabhai (2006) and Sanju (2018). She co-owns a production house, Born Free Entertainment, with her husband Sahil Sangha.[3] Their first film, Love Breakups Zindagi,[4] was released on 7 October 2011.

Early and personal lifeEdit

Mirza was born in India. Her father, Frank Handrich, was a German graphics and industrial fair designer, architect, artist and interior designer based in Munich. Her mother, Deepa, is a Bengali who is an interior designer, landscaper and currently does social work as a volunteer to help alcoholics and drug addicts. When Dia was four-and-a-half years old, her parents got divorced.[5][6] Afterwards, her mother married Ahmed Mirza, a Dakhini Muslim man from Hyderabad, and Dia (then only a toddler) was given the last name of her step-father. Dia's step-father died in 2003.[5]

When living in Khairatabad, Hyderabad city, Dia initially attended Vidyaranya High School, a co-ed school. On the insistence of her step-father, Dia was enrolled into Nasr School, a prestigious girls day school also located in Khairtabad. She credits Nasr School for giving her the confidence to pursue acting. She says it was the Nasr Dramatic Society, an in-school club which boosted her morale. After finishing school, Dia attended Stanley Junior College and completed her graduation in Bachelor of Arts from Ambedkar Open University, Hyderabad.[7]

In April 2014, she got engaged to her longtime business partner Sahil Sangha. Mirza and Sangha were married on 18 October 2014 at her husband's sprawling farmhouse in Chattarpur on the outskirts of Delhi.[8] In August 2019, Mirza announced her separation from her husband after five years of marriage.[9][10]


Mirza worked while in college as a marketing executive for a media firm, Neeraj's Multi-media Studio[citation needed]. At the same time, she modelled for print and TV commercials for brands such as Lipton, Wall's ice cream, Emami and many more. She won Miss Asia Pacific in 2000.

Mirza wanted to complete her graduation in Arts by correspondence during the Miss Asia Pacific competition, modelling assignments, travelling and training. She could not complete her graduation due to being busy at work. She studied at NYU[citation needed].

She debuted through Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein, which did not do well at the box office, though it developed a cult following among Indian youth. She then appeared in movies such as Dum, Deewanapan, Tumko Na Bhool Paayenge, Tumsa Nahin Dekha – A Love Story, Parineeta, Dus, Lage Raho Munnabhai and Salam Mumbai. In 2018, she appeared as Sanjay Dutt's wife Manyata Dutt in the biopic Sanju, which ranks among the highest grossing Indian films.

She is making her web debut as an actress with the ZEE5 web series Kaafir. Set in Kashmir, she stars opposite Mohit Raina in the series.[11] She has also produced a sitcom web series titled Mind the Malhotras, streaming on Amazon Prime Video. The series stars Cyrus Sahukar and Mini Mathur in the lead.[12]

She has garnered praise for her social work[citation needed]. She got an IIFA 2012 Green Award for her contribution towards a green environment. She has done awareness campaigns on prevention of female foeticide, HIV awareness, the Cancer Patients Aid Association, PETA, ADAPT and CRY. She publicly supported the Naramada Bachao Andolan. She has written articles for Hindustan Times and other publications.


Dia Mirza was the second runner-up at Femina Miss India 2000 and was subsequently sent to Miss Asia Pacific 2000, where she won. She also won Miss Beautiful Smile, Miss Avon and Miss Close-Up Smile in Miss India. When she won the Miss Asia Pacific title on 3 December 2000 in Manila, the Philippines, she became the first Indian since Tara Anne Fonseca to win this title in 27 years.[13] She completed the hat-trick of India winning international pageants in the year 2000; Lara Dutta won the Miss Universe title and Priyanka Chopra won the Miss World title in the same year.[14]

Community services and activismEdit

Mirza has been involved with Cancer Patients Aid Association and Spastics Society of India, and has worked extensively with the government of Andhra Pradesh to spread HIV awareness, prevention of female foeticide, PETA, CRY and most recently the NDTV Greenathon – an effort to find tangible solutions against pollution and the book, "Deke Dheko" by Radio Mirchi (a campaign initiated to collect books for underprivileged children). Her other hobbies include writing, reading, painting, pottery, horse riding and theatre. She has written several articles for the Hindustan Times and other publications as a guest writer. She is on the board of the Coca-Cola foundation that works towards development in rural India. She is associated with campaigns such as Sanctuary Asia's Leave Me Alone and Female Foeticide.

In 2010 she adopted two cheetah cubs at the Prince of Wales zoological park in Lucknow.[15][16]

Mirza, along with Aamir Khan, publicly expressed support for the Narmada Bachao Andolan, a group protesting the building of a dam. This aroused the ire of political activists from the Bharatiya Janata Party, who led a protest march against the actress.[17] Dia won the Green Award at IIFA 2012 for spreading awareness about environment-related issues.

Along with these, Mirza has endorsed The Body Shop for their stand on a ban on animal testing and propagation of recycled packaging and natural products.[18] She is the Eco-Ambassador for Panasonic.

Mirza has been felicitated at award functions for her active involvement in social and environmental issues.[19]

She has been named the ambassador for the Swachh Bharat Mission's youth-based 'Swachh Saathi' programme. As an ambassador, the actress would interact with school and college students from across the country through awareness sessions, community cleaning activities and motivational videos.[20]

She joined Save The Children India as their first ever artist ambassador. As an ambassador, she will use the reach of her celebrity status to champion the rights of children in India and around the world.[21]

On World Environment Day 2017, she was appointed brand ambassador for the Wildlife Trust of India. She has lent her support to WTI's wildlife conservation endeavors for several years now and is a founder-member of the organization's Club Nature initiative.[22]

"I hope that over the next 15 months it will capture the country's imagination, corporate India, and people to come together and help secure 101 corridors for India's wild elephants," said WTI's brand ambassador Dia Mirza. n a bid to raise awareness about the shrinking space for wild elephants in the country, a 'Gaj Yatra' campaign has been launched in Mumbai. The campaign was launched on Sunday by NGO Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) at the Siddhivinayak temple in Prabhadevi area where Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu was present.[23]

Dia Mirza was appointed as UN Environment's Goodwill Ambassador for India. She has been recognized by the United Nations for her contribution to environment conservation, joining global celebrities like Cate Blanchett, Anne Hathaway, Angelina Jolie, Katy Perry and Emma Watson.[24]


  • Zee Cine Awards for Best Debut: Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein
  • Bollywood movie award for Best Debut Newcomer: Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein
  • Nominated, Screen Awards for Most Promising Female Newcomer: Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein
  • Nominated, Screen Awards for Most Promising Female Newcomer: Deewaanapan
  • Nominated, Popular Award for the Best Debut (Female): Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein
  • Great women achiever award for Beauty
  • Green Globe Honor for Extraordinary Work by a Public Figure
  • Women's Achievement Award
  • The Jaipur Internatio kisser of the world for Best Actress award: Paanch Adhyay
  • IIFA Green Award for Contribution Towards a Greener Environment
  • The Sixth Geospa Asiaspa India Awards for Eco Crusader of the Year
  • Ms. Eternal Beauty At The Femina Miss India
  • The Woman Of Substance At Rotary Awards
  • Green Crusader of the Year Award at IAA - India Chapter Olive Crown Awards
  • The 'Valerian Of Environmental Issues by the makers of the film Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets


Year Film/Album Role Notes
1999 En Swasa Kaatre Dancer Tamil film; Extra[25]
2001 Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein Reena Malhotra Zee Cine Awards for Best Debut
Bollywood movie award for Best Debut Newcomer
Nominated, Screen Awards for Most Promising Female Newcomer
Nominated, Popular Award for the Best Debut (Female)
Deewaanapan Kiran Choudhary Nominated, Screen Awards for Most Promising Female Newcomer: Deewaanapan
2002 Tumko Na Bhool Paayenge Muskaan
Tehzeeb Nazneen Jamal
2003 Pran Jaye Par Shaan Na Jaye Saundarya
Stop! Shama
Dum Kaveri
2004 Tumsa Nahin Dekha Jia
Kyun...! Ho Gaya Na Preeti Special appearance
My Brother… Nikhil Special appearance
Blackmail Mrs. Rathod Special appearance
2005 Naam Gum Jaayega Natasha/Gitanjali
Parineeta Gayatri
Dus Anu Dheer
Koi Mere Dil Mein Hai Simran
Fight Club – Members Only Anu Chopra
Phir Hera Pheri Item number (song)
2006 Alag Purva Rana
Lage Raho Munna Bhai Simran
Prateeksha Reena Brown Television film
2007 Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd. Shilpa
Shootout at Lokhandwala Meeta Mattoo
Cash Aditi
Heyy Babyy Herself Special appearance in a Song
Om Shanti Om Herself Special appearance
Dus Kahaniyaan Sia
2008 Krazzy 4 Shikha
2009 Kissan Priya
Jai Veeru Anna
Fruit and Nut Monica Gokhale
Kurbaan Rehana (WIACB reporter) Special appearance
Luck By Chance Herself Special appearance
2010 Hum Tum Aur Ghost Gehna Sinha
2011 Love Breakups Zindagi Naina
2012 Paanch Adhyay Ishita
2014 Bobby Jasoos Producer
2016 Salaam Mumbai Karishma Iranian-Indian Film
2018 Sanju Manyata Dutt

Web seriesEdit

Year Title Role Platform Notes
2019 Kaafir Kainaaz ZEE5 [11]
2019 Mind the Malhotras Producer Amazon Prime Video [12]
2019 Moghuls Khanzada [26]


Year Show Role Notes
2016 Ganga - The Soul of India Herself Channel Living Foodz


  1. ^ Sen, Sushmita (9 December 2015). "Happy Birthday Dia Mirza: Vinod Jagtap, Priyanka, Riteish, others wish her on social media". International Business Times, India Edition. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  2. ^ "Turning 30 is the fabulous: Dia Mirza". The Indian Express. 9 December 2011. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  3. ^ "Sahil Sangha Biography". Oneindia Entertainment.
  4. ^ "Love Breakups Zindagi – Sweet and honest sans drama". indiaglitz.
  5. ^ a b "I took my surname Mirza from my step-father: Dia Mirza". The Times of India.
  6. ^ "Dia Mirzas Wedding to be a Private Affair – NDTV Movies".
  7. ^ "Dia Mirza – 2000-1991! – Miss India Winners 2009-1964 – Archives – Femina Miss India". Indiatimes. Retrieved 2 June 2011.
  8. ^ "Inside Dia Mirza, Sahil Sangha's Wedding". NDTV Movies. Retrieved 19 October 2014.
  9. ^ "Dia Mirza Announces Separation From Husband Sahil Sangha on Social Media". News 18. Retrieved 1 August 2019.
  10. ^ "Dia Mirza And Sahil Sangha Announce Separation After 11 Years Together: 'We Remain Friends'". NDTV. Retrieved 1 August 2019.
  11. ^ a b "Kaafir trailer: Dia Mirza, Mohit Raina star in this intense web series set in Kashmir". The Indian Express. 28 May 2019. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  12. ^ a b "Dia Mirza-Produced Mind the Malhotras Is Amazon's Next Indian Series". NDTV Gadgets 360. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  13. ^ "ENDURING BEAUTIES". The Times of India.
  14. ^ "Miss India Winners 2000 – 1991 –". Retrieved 30 November 2011.
  15. ^ "Actress Dia Mirza adopts leopard cubs". The Times of India. 13 April 2010.
  16. ^ "Latest picture of Dia Mirza in Kenya". Condé Nast Traveller India. 25 July 2018.
  17. ^ "BJP blasts Dia Mirza for anti-dam stand". Rediff. Retrieved 24 May 2006.
  18. ^ "Dia Mirza appointed Body Shop's brand ambassador". The Navhind Times. Archived from the original on 27 March 2014.
  19. ^ Pioneer, The. "Dia Mirza campaigns for protection of snow leopards". The Pioneer. Retrieved 25 May 2019.
  20. ^ "Dia Mirza named ambassador for 'Swachh Saathi' programme". ABP Live. 6 June 2016. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
  21. ^ "Dia Mirza joins 'Save The Children' as Artist Ambassador". 9 December 2016. Retrieved 9 December 2016.
  22. ^ "DIA MIRZA NAMED WILDLIFE TRUST OF INDIA'S BRAND AMBASSADOR". Mumbai Mirror. 5 June 2017. Retrieved 5 June 2017.
  23. ^ "'Gaj Yatra' to secure elephant corridors launched in Mumbai\url=". Indian Express. 14 August 2017.
  24. ^ "Dia Mirza Is Now UN Environment Goodwill Ambassador For India". Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  25. ^ WildWest Studios (13 November 2016). "A. R. Rahman Hit Tamil Song Jumbalaka Jumbalaka -En Swasa Kaatre" – via YouTube.
  26. ^ "Shabana Azmi, Ronit Roy, Dia Mirza to feature in Nikkhil Advani's TV series Moghuls, based on Alex Rutherford's novel". Firstpost. 5 September 2018. Retrieved 30 May 2019.

External linksEdit