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Shefali Shah: Imposter syndrome made me feel Vartika was a fluke

Updated on: 28 September,2023 07:10 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Mohar Basu | mohar.basu@mid-day.com

Nominated in the Best Actor category at International Emmys for Delhi Crime 2, Shefali says constant praise for her character has made her overcome her doubts

Shefali Shah: Imposter syndrome made me feel Vartika was a fluke

Shefali Shah has headlined two seasons of the crime drama

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One assumed that Shefali Shah would’ve scheduled a party after hearing of her International Emmy nomination in the Best Actress category. But when we call the actor, she says a party is not in order. Instead, she intends to sink into her couch and read a book. “For me, any kind of achievement is short-lived. Within minutes, I was back to reality,” she smiles. Reality is sweet when you’ve been recognised globally for a compelling performance in the second season of Delhi Crime. “The fact that I’m nominated is an honour. My mind doesn’t go to the [possibility of a] win. I don’t want to take away from today for something I may or may not have.”


In 2020, the opening season of Delhi Crime was adjudged the Best Drama Series at the International Emmys. Three years on, Shah views her nomination as her character Vartika’s moment. “She isn’t a caricature of a cop. Delhi Crime highlights pressing social issues. [I remember] I slept till 2 pm the day the second season dropped. Since the first season had [attained] so much success, I was scared. But when I woke up that afternoon, I cried with joy [on seeing the reviews].”


With the second edition, director Tanuj Chopra delved into how society pushes the marginalised against the wall. Tell Shah that the nomination raises the expectations around the next season, and she states, “Tanuj said that now more people will watch the show, and expectations will be higher. I am pressured already. I never expected Vartika to be a hero. I have an imposter syndrome that made me feel Vartika was a fluke. But I have been working for so long and with every nomination, I think I couldn’t have fooled people all along!”


While Rocket Boys’ Jim Sarbh is a contender for the Best Actor award, Vir Das has earned a nomination in Best Comedy for Landing. Shah says the nominations highlight the diversity in the world of art. “The world is becoming inclusive, and art [transcends] language. So, someone who doesn’t know our language has watched Vartika, like we watched Narcos in the original language.” 

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