Exclusive - Simple Kaul recalls her role in Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah: It was a departure from the norm, being a Kashmiri, I infused a lot of Kashmiri elements

April 23,2024

Actress Simple Kaul says that she has always got modern characters to play on screen. She adds that only her character in Taarak Mehta Ka Ooltah Chashmah had a rustic feel to it.

“I've generally portrayed modern characters. That seems to be the impression I give off to people. Except for one show, Taarak Mehta, where I was made to look like someone from a village, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was a departure from the norm. I worked on my accent for that role. Being a Kashmiri, I infused a lot of Kashmiri elements, language, and specific words into the show. However, apart from that, I don't believe I've taken on a role quite like that of a village dweller. My most recent show was distinct because it was very true to life. “I found immense joy in it. It felt so real that in emotional scenes I have genuinely cried and so have my co-actors after seeing me cry. It’s an inside energy which can be felt while we perform the scene together and feel for each other while performing. I would genuinely feel love for my on-screen child and even experience fear from the character of the abusive husband I had in the show” she says.

She says that she has always focused on how genuine her character is on screen. “I endeavored to depict my character as authentically as possible, given that the show's genre was light, youthful, and grounded to reality. My role was unique because, while it started with a certain image, it possessed layers that were unveiled over time. As the story of the character progressed, so did the revelation of her complexity. You come to realise that the character is vastly different from the initial portrayal. She appears bold and cold but is actually fragile, feminine, and laden with inner turmoil. She's living an outward facade of strength. It was so beautiful to play a character that was completely genuine and relatable. In this role, I portrayed a modern woman who appeared as a cool, contemporary , focused and no nonsense girl but was in fact, a victim of domestic violence. This theme resonates with many of us in society. She could be a working woman, educated, with kids, yet silently enduring the suffering. While delving into this character, I discovered a lot. I realised how many women are actually undergoing such trials, without voicing their pain. While my story revolved around domestic violence, I received numerous messages on my Instagram DMs from women who have experienced similar situations and people who have witnessed women around them or within their family going through it. When my character raised her voice against the hardships she faced, the support poured in from all corners of India and abroad. It wasn't just women who were suffering; it was also people who had witnessed such struggles or children who had seen their mothers enduring hardships. It was truly astonishing to witness how people responded, and how my portrayal resonated with their experiences, inspiring them to stand up and speak out,” she says.

Ask her if she can see herself playing a mom on screen, and she says, “I certainly can't envision myself portraying the stereotypical role of a lead character's mother. I aspire to take on characters that possess their own distinctiveness, characters that are recognized for their individual traits. I don't want to be identified merely as someone's mom, daughter, sister, or friend or girlfriend. I aim to portray the lead protagonist and undertake roles of significant importance. Other considerations are secondary. I am committed to playing characters that contribute significantly to the show's dynamics. Otherwise, I wouldn't take on the role.”