As a performer, I have always admired Rupali Ganguly's craft. Be it the middle-class Monisha (as Maya Sarabhai would call it), or the humble Anupamaa, Rupali has managed to leave a piece of her characters with me from every show. Especially now with Anupamaa, there are so many traits many of us can relate to and while the show is being a change of narrative for Indian television, it is Rupali to thank for. However, Rupali has gratitude for the men in her life who inspired her to get back to the sets after years of being a mother.
Recently when I spoke to the actress, she told me about how she was on a break and wasn't looking back to get on TV, but it was her husband Ashwin K Verma, son Rudransh and also producer Rajan Shahi who played a very important role in her being Anupamaa.
Talking about her inspiration, Rupali says...
It’s a man, it’s my husband Ashwin, I was too skeptical to step out of the house because daily soap scenes are very different. It requires a lot of commitment, and my son was almost 7-years-old when I took up Anupamaa. Behind my success is my man. Firstly, Rajan Shahi who believed in me, nobody would have thought Rupali Ganguly for this role, there were big names coming up, I didn’t even want to get into the television field, I wanted to wait till my child was at least 10-12 years of age before I stepped out of the house. When Rajan sir offered me this part, I asked my husband how will we manage. He told me he will take a backseat, he is a nine times Emmy award nominee and has directed lots of commercials. He told me you have never gotten your due as an actor and I want to see you shine, with a man like that which woman wouldn’t go out and conquer the world. And my son would initially cry, but he later understood that mumma has to do it as she needs to build an animal shelter. So these two and a half men in my life have been my inspiration, especially my husband. I am nothing without him.
Well, in this day age, if there is a woman behind a man's success, there is also a superman behind a woman flying high. And while we need more men like Rajan Shahi, Rudransh and Ashwin, we also need more characters like Anupamaa on the small screen.
Talking about how her character has inspired people, Rupali says...
A lot of children follow what Anupamaa says, like the kisaan track that happened to teach them not to waste food. A lot of people did not bargain for Diwali diyas and messaged me how they bought Indian-made and not China-made ones. Even the bahu track, where it was like every mother in law should fold hands in front of the bahu also was well received. So, for me, it has changed thought processes. Tomorrow when my son gets married I would want to be a mother-in-law like Anupamaa.
I must say, Rupali has embraced Anupamaa, as much as the character did to her. Truly, I could not imagine a better Anupamaa than Rupali.