‘I Made Myself Feel Inferior’

Having grown up in Saharanpur, a small town in Uttar Pradesh, Anushka Kaushik has come a long way in her career. A frequent face on OTT now, the actress has starred in five OTT projects this year alone. These include Anil Kapoor-Fatima Sana Shaikh-led Thar, Boys Hostel, Bravehearts, Ghar Waapsi, and Crash Course. While she’s got a lot going for her, Anushka admits that she owes most of it to her dramatic society, Sangarsh, which she was a part of when she was studying in Delhi.

In a chat with News18 Showsha, Anushka recalls that it was the three-year association with the drama society that helped her evolve not only as an actor but as a person as well. “Wo waala jo waqt hai na, teen saal jo maine kiya Sangarsh (the drama society), ussi ne mujhe bada kiya hai. I’ve seen life in those three years. I am talking about facing all the insecurities to getting world exposure,” she says.

Noting that she comes from a rather smaller town, which was spread across only 7 to 8 kilometers, to find a footing in the capital city, Anushka confesses that she learned about brands, international stars, and more after moving into the big city and joining the drama society. “I used to wonder what a world this is. I was never ever exposed to these things. It is always not about what the other thinks about it is always about how good you are placing yourself,” she remembers.

“And at that point of things, I genuinely was not respecting myself. I made myself feel inferior. When you are insecure yourself, whatever the opposite person says, you end up taking things negatively. I think that was the time that my theatre, my Sangarsh — my dramatics academy taught me, that you always have to come up. (It taught me that) you are the first person who should hold yourself and pull yourself and tell yourself that you are worth it. And you can do anything. If you don’t know anything, first of all, accept it. I was not ready to accept myself. Sangarsh has played a very important part,” she recalls.

Her drama influence is evident on her wish list of actors she wants to work with as well. “Yeah, I mean, the list of actors I want to work long. I really wanted to work with Irrfan (Khan) sahab but wo toh nahi ho paaya. I would love to work with Manoj Bajpayee sir, Tabu ma’am, these are two of my favorites,” she said, adding that she also wants to work with Alia Bhatt as well one day.

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While she waits for the right script and opportunities to knock on her door that would give her a chance to work with her favourite stars, Anushka reveals that her projects for the year are not over yet. “You can expect, by the end of this year, an anthology for Netflix. First season was out there already. And I mean, I cannot say much about it but I am working with Amit Sharma of Badhaai Ho. But I think people who have seen the first season, they’ve been waiting for the second season for a long time now. There’s also a show that I am doing with Tigmanshu Dhulia,” she concludes.

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