Her idea of romance is filmi
Devoleena Bhattacharjee may be better known as television’s submissive Gopi Bahu but in real life she is quite a spunky girl. As we catch up with her for a candid chat she goes on to reveal different sides to her personality. The actress parts with some insights around her name. “Devoleena means meditating with God. A close family friend suggested the name to my parents. I’m a mix of Assamese and Bengali. My mother is from Assam and my father is a Bengali. I feel very proud of my achievements. It’s such a great feeling that people from my region are making a mark and becoming famous,” she says.
Devoleena always had ambitions to become an actor. She says, “I have been into theatre since childhood. I would regularly participate in plays during youth fests. I even came to Mumbai once for a play I acted in; it was called Mohenjo-Daro. Then I took a mini break to concentrate on academics. My family has always been into the arts and cultural activities. I was pursuing jewellery designing in Delhi NIFT when I auditioned for Dance India Dance. I was in the top 100 and that’s what got me to Mumbai. But I went back to Kolkata as my mother is a single parent and I couldn’t pressurise her to support me, as Mumbai is a very expensive city to live in. My father passed away when I was 12 and my mother raised me single-handedly since then.”
Devoleena got her big break as a lead on TV when she replaced Giaa Manek as the popular character Gopi on Saath Nibhaana Saathiya. She says she had no apprehensions about replacing another actress. “I had no apprehensions, but yes there was a bit of pressure. Of course I understand the negative reactions I got at the first stage while playing this character. I was quite disappointed as it was an overnight replacement. But as the time flew I kept moving on. Now I feel so blessed to get all the love, appreciation and blessings. My mom, brother, friends, fans and co-actors have all been so supportive. They give me the strength to move ahead. Today, I have completed a year-and-a-half of a successful and beautiful journey of Saath Nibhana Saathiya. I’m happy about it. I tried to deliver my best and thankfully the audience accepted me gradually. Now they love me. Everyone on the set has been encouraging. I remember my first birthday on the set. I was just covered with cake.”
Devoleena has a handful of other interests besides acting. “I love singing and dancing. I really like to listen to music and also to read books. There are also times when I love to irritate some people who are very close to me, especially on the sets,” she says with a smile. She’s quite adept in the kitchen too. “I can cook, yes. I cook good chicken biryani and dry chicken. I just love to have fun, be it while working or otherwise. But I like to keep a low profile; I don’t like to be very public about everything I do. I like leading a normal life.”
The actress is also quite a romantic at heart. “My idea of romance is very filmi. I’d like to be in the middle of the sea on a yacht with my man. I would love it if it was late night and drizzled a bit. I’d like to date someone as crazy as me, someone who pampers me a lot,” she says.