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My name is Payal Shukla and I'm not a Bihari

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With a surname that reads as Shukla, 23-year-old Gujarati girl Payal is often left to clear people"s perception. “My name is Payal Shukla and I"m not a Bihari or Upite. Often, I have to explain this to my friends and other people. Shuklas are also Gujarati, “said Payal who is better known as Kanchan of Palkon ki chhaon mein fame.

Over the last year, life has been a smooth ride for Shukla as she"s finally managed to establish herself in the industry. That wasn"t the case before Palkon ki chhaon mein. The cherubic Payal was taking one show after another but they were all cameo roles.

“I started with an episodic in Aladin. Thereafter, I played cameos in Yahaan Ke Hum Sikander, FIR, CID. Soon, I was labelled a cameo queen but that didn"t bother me. I"ve come here to work, and so, I accepted anything that came my way. In fact, I"ve also done cameos for Gujarati and Urdu shows," says the actress unflinchingly.

Well, Palkon.. too was purely destiny.

She says, “I got a call from a friend who was going for the auditions of an NDTV Imagine (now Imagine TV) show. I was sitting idle and, so, I agreed to go with him reluctantly. You wouldn"t believe but I gave my first audition without any make-up. Later, I was called for another audition and this time with the make-up. I felt that I"d done a good job and was expecting a call from them. That didn"t happen instantly but 20 days later; I was told that we"ll be shooting in Indore."

Palkon ki chhaon mein has nearly completed a year but if rumours are to be believed, the show might come to an end soon. Shukla though disagrees saying, “These rumours were there for a whole but not any more, as we"ve supposedly got an extension.. Palkon.. has been among the top two shows on Imagine thus I don"t think the channel will shut it."

History shows that such extensions are just a temporary relief. God forbid, if the show was to go offer air or if our girl bagged a lead role, would she then quit the sagging Palkon..?

“Well, I can"t comment on the first possibility but if I got a maiden lead role, I surely will request Palkon. producers to relieve me of my duties. They are nice people and I"m sure they won"t object," says Shukla confidently.

Finally, the conversation veers towards her personal life; Payal though is quick to kill our excitement.

“I"m not seeing anyone and nor am I interested in this. My work is my only priority. That doesn"t mean to say I"m a nerd. I love watching films. In fact, my Palkon.. colleague Amrapali Dubey and I spend time together seeing movies or shopping. My other interests are travelling, learning different cultures. I"m also very religious and fast every Thursday," the girl sighed.

Well, a God fearing individual is bond to reap success. Keep the faith intact Payal.

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