Melinda Shankar

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Melinda Shankar
Melinda Shankar 10.jpg
Shankar at an event in November 2010
Born (1992-02-18) February 18, 1992 (age 24)[1][2]
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Occupation Actress
Years active 2008–present
Known for Degrassi: The Next Generation

Melinda Shankar (born February 18, 1992) is a Canadian actress of Indo-Guyanese heritage. She is best known for her starring roles as Alli Bhandari in the long-running TV series Degrassi: The Next Generation and as Indira "Indie" Mehta in the YTV series How To Be Indie.

Early life[edit]

Shankar was born in Ottawa to Indo-Guyanese parents who immigrated to Canada.[2] She has two older sisters and a brother, who is also an actor. She was raised in Orleans, a suburban section of Ottawa.[citation needed]

She began studying ballet and karate at the age of three. Shankar currently has a black belt in karate.[3] She attended Sir Wilfrid Laurier Secondary School in Ottawa until grade 11 before moving to Toronto following her casting in Degrassi in 2008.[4]


Shankar with Andra Fuller at 2013 Canadian Screen Awards Nominee Reception

As an actress[edit]

Shankar began her career as a child model and appeared in numerous print advertisements, including a Procter & Gamble billboard in Los Angeles.[citation needed] Shankar's mother was an actress and her paternal grandfather was a director in Guyana. Shankar's father would often drive up to five hours from Ottawa to Toronto for her auditions.[5][6]

Shankar with Brody Jenner at 2013 TeenzFAV Awards

In 2008, she debuted as an actress in the popular teen television series Degrassi, joining the cast as an incoming 9th grade student.[7][8] Shankar left the show in 2015, after six seasons.[citation needed]

In 2009, she starred in a television series on YTV called How To Be Indie. She played the lead role of Indira.

Shankar was cast in her first feature film, Festival of Lights in 2010. The movie was filmed on location in New York City and Georgetown, Guyana. Her father served as production manager for the film due to his familiarity with the locations in Guyana.[5][6]

Other work[edit]

In 2013, Shankar and a longtime childhood friend began working on an image consulting business.[9]

On February 22, 2014, Shankar launched Miss Conception, a professional styling and image agency based in Toronto.[10]

Personal life[edit]

In 2008, Shankar and her family moved to Toronto when she was cast in Degrassi. She currently resides in North York, a district in Toronto.[11]

She has been romantically linked to fellow Degrassi alum Daniel Kelly.[12] They have since broken up.[citation needed]


Year Title Role Notes
2008–2015 Degrassi: The Next Generation Allia "Alli" Bhandari Main cast; 146 episodes
2009–11 How To Be Indie Indira "Indie" Mehta Lead role
2010 Harriet the Spy: Blog Wars Janie Gibbs TV movie
2010 Festival of Lights Reshma Lead role
2010 Trigger Rocker Chick #1 TV movie
2013 Alive Kaitlyn TV movie
2016 Filth City Monica
2017 Darker Than Night Mika


External links[edit]