She took time to claim her spot at the top in the television industry, but once there, there’s been no looking back for actor Divyanka Tripathi. But Tripathi, better known as Dr Ishitha on television show Yeh Hai Mohabbatein, had her share of adjustments to make in the glamour world.
“The biggest struggle was wearing short dresses. In the beginning, it was a taboo for me,” says the actor who was born and brought up in Bhopal.
“I played a simple girl in Banoo Main Teri Dulhan (2006) and after that everyone thought I am like that in real life too. It was when I entered Comedy Circus in 2013 that I actually opened up because I realised that if I don’t wear short clothes, people will not come out of this notion that Divyanka cannot do anything but wear conservative clothes and look sober. I was being offered same stereotyped ‘bahu’ characters till then. As an actor, I really had to break this thought process, as for me acting was more important than my wardrobe” exclaims Tripathi.
So, did people make fun of her? “Oh yes, people cracked jokes on me about how they looked at me as a plain Jane or Deviji. I realised that instead of expecting good acting out of me, they would just judge me for my clothes. I wanted to change their perception. Hence, I forced myself out of my comfort zone and started experimenting with my looks. Today, I can be myself. People know that I’m not limited to certain clothing. They can imagine me in varied roles now,” says the actor.
For someone, who stayed away from the glitz and glamour of Mumbai, becoming a household name was unexpected, but the actor has a theory behind her journey.
“I think the universe was preparing me to be an actor. I never pursued one thing for too long but I was a jack of all trades. I learnt everything possible because I knew my father would never shell out money for dresses or parties but he would always give me money for new courses and books. I have learnt sketching, drawing, singing, dancing, rifle shooting, parasailing, horse riding, mountaineering etc. I was an NCC cadet. I love the fact that I was encouraged by my parents to learn something new,” says Tripathi who is engaged to marry actor Vivek Dahiya.
Talking about her source of inspiration, the actor says, “My parents and my siblings have been my biggest support. Had it not been for them, I would have not been the confident and fearless person that I am today.”
She adds how her life would be incomplete without her siblings, “My best memories in life are with my elder sister Priyanka Tiwari and my brother Aishwarya Tripathi. I miss the days when me and my sister would wait in the scorching hot summer afternoons for the kulfi-wala to pass by. Nothing would give us more happiness than that rs 5 kulfi and a kidz’ movie cassette. As for our brother, we both pampered him like our child. We were his favourite tooth fairies.”
On Vivek and marriage
One thing about Vivek you love: He is so positive, progressive and loving. He was always ready to take up my responsibility in every way possible.
One thing you don’t like about Vivek: He is so likeable. I like everything about him.
Life after marriage : Vivek is a very open minded person. Generally men in India like to sit back and get dinner and coffee on the table. Vivek is all about equality and does not want everything readymade. I don’t think balancing marriage and work would be tough having him around.
Prized possession: Vivek and my family.
Phobia: I am really scared of losing the people I love. My family and Vivek mean the world to me and I would not want them to be hurt ever.
Favorite dish: I love daal baati, Gujarati food and chaats.
Define yourself in three words :Positive, flexible, adventurous
Two things fans don’t know about you: I forget a lot! I have a poor memory. Main Ghajini hoon!
I can be super lazy. I can sleep for 15 hours a day, which I can do only when I am on a break between serials.
Had you not been an actor, what would you have been? : An Army officer
Idea of success: Achieving my dreams and being happy with it. I want a quality life for my family at all times. Happiness is success!
What turns you off: Blatant lies and disrespect.
Health advise for fans: Have a very good breakfast in the morning and throughout the day keep having small meals after every 2 hours.
Its important to workout, yoga is good.
Tough thing about being an actor: Handling fame and fan adulation with humility.