Deepika Padukone was born in Copenhagen, Denmark and raised in Bangalore, India.
Padukone is Hindu–as far as I can tell–and looks to be rather devout. She occasionally travels around India to various Hindu temples to offer prayers and worship.
But she also went to a Christian school growing up, visited an important Muslim shrine, and made a pilgrimage to visit one of the most famous Sikh temples in India, rumor has it, on the advice of an astrologer. It appears to be common practice among Hindus to visit the holy places of other religions, and even to go to Christian schools, but if any of you can give me some more insight into religious pluralism in India, I’d be much obliged.
Regardless, she’s definitely dedicated to her faith. Outside of her pilgrimages, she talks about God and praying here and there in interviews, and she makes a point of celebrating the Hindu festival Ganesh Chaturthi with her family.
I don’t think we’re going to hear from Padukone any time soon about her political beliefs. She seems to be much more concerned with not saying anything offensive or divisive than she is with using her celebrity status as a soapbox. About her tendency to shy away from controversy, she said,
I know people think that I’m very politically correct, but actually, I am like that as a person. I am very shy, I am reserved, I think before I speak. . . . By nature, I am a very quiet person.
Even when she made a movie that was critical of the effect of India’s caste system on education and government jobs in the country, she refused to give her opinion about that issue. She claimed that she didn’t know enough about the issue, and was afraid she might say something incorrect:
Most of my knowledge [about the education system] has come from before and during the making of the film, so I don’t feel it would be right for me to comment or take sides.
So unless she does a complete about-face in how she interacts with the world, I’m afraid we’re not going to get anything more out of Padukone. But of course, if the unexpected comes to pass, keep us updated in the comments.