Love Is Blind star Deepti Vempati has branded ex-fiancé Abhishek ‘Shake’ Chatterjee’s groveling apology ‘fake’ – and says she was left ‘broken’ by his cruel behavior on the hit Netflix dating series.
In her first UK interview, the US reality favorite accused Shake, who she agreed to marry despite never seeing him in the flesh, of being ‘insincere’ after he claimed to be ‘truly sorry for the things he said’, in a video posted to Instagram this week.
Speaking to MailOnline, Deepti, 31, admitted that she felt Shake, 33, ‘wasted’ her experience on the show after his chauvinist and disrespectful comments towards her appearance destroyed her confidence.
‘It’s too late’: Love Is Blind star Deepti Vempati has branded ex-fiancé Abhishek ‘Shake’ Chatterjee’s grovelling apology ‘fake’ and says she was left ‘broken’ by his cruel behavior on the hit Netflix dating series
Deepti said: ‘This is the first time he’s apologised. Right before he made that video, he sent me the same text message. But for me… it’s too late.
‘I feel like he’s just doing damage control and clearly what he’s continued to do on social media since that apology, it’s evident that he does not care. He did that for show. He did that to get less hate but he’s not sorry.
‘I honestly don’t want anything to do with him and his apology is fake. It feels insincere.
‘why now? After 4/5 weeks of this happening… as soon as episode 1-4 dropped he should have been apologizing if it really was sincere and from the heart. He’s only done it because he’s getting a lot of hate.’
‘His apology is fake’: The US reality favorite accused Shake, who she agreed to marry despite never seeing him in the flesh, of being ‘insincere’ after he claimed to be ‘truly sorry for the things he said’ this week
Netflix series Love Is Blind, which is presented by US couple Nick and Vanessa Lachey, sees contestants date each other without knowing what their partner looks like.
But fans and cast members grew frustrated with Shake for his obsession with appearances, going against the ethos of the dating show, which encourages connecting on a deeper level rather than being influenced by looks.
Shake insisted that he only dates ‘blondes’ and made regular jibes at Deepti, while also claiming he’s not attracted to Indian women.
Deepti has been praised by viewers for dumping Shake at the altar, choosing to be friends instead, after realizing days before their wedding that he didn’t have the right qualities she was looking for in a partner.
She explained: ‘I was happy on my wedding day because we could celebrate our friendship at least – but I had no idea what he had been saying.
‘I knew this was not my person’: Deepti has been praised by viewers for dumping Shake at the altar after realizing days before their wedding that he didn’t have the right qualities she was looking for in a partner
‘How could I have got married? For me, the switch came a couple of dates before the wedding, we were trying to grow our intimacy and I thought to myself ‘What am I doing?
‘Why am I forcing something that doesn’t exist? Do I want even Shake as a husband?’ I have started to show qualities that I wasn’t looking for in my partner. I just knew this was not my person. It was the best decision I made.’
Deepti’s strength and ability to know her own self-worth has taken years of work.
The star, who’s originally from India and moved to the States when she was eight, admits she has battled with body insecurities and identity issues after being bullied for looking different.
‘I was overweight’: The star, who’s originally from India and moved to the States when she was eight, admits she has battled with body insecurities and identity issues after being bullied for looking different
‘I was broken’: Deepti feels ‘disappointed’ in Shake for ‘wasting’ her experience after he admitted to only dating ‘blondes’ and not being attracted to Indian women
She hoped to finally find her life partner by signing up to Love Is Blind following the breakdown of two long-term relationships – but feels Shake, who she suspects only joined the cast for fame, ‘wasted’ her experience.
She said: ‘My whole life I have been struggling because I have wanted to fit in.
‘Coming to America and not looking like everyone, talking like everyone, I was bullied a lot, I was overweight, and I had a lot of a self-body image issues.
‘In adulthood I have worked hard to build that back and know that I shouldn’t run from my culture because it’s amazing. It has taken me a lot of time to be in this confident place.
‘I go through periods of being angry’: Deeply hoped to finally find her life partner by signing up to Love Is Blind following the breakdown of two long-term relationships – but feels Shake only joined the cast for fame
‘That’s why I am so disappointed because if Shake does place so much importance on the physical appearance and that’s a deal breaker then maybe Love Is Blind wasn’t the show for him. I have wasted my experience. Maybe if I was blonde and different looking he may have married me.
‘I have to say I was broken during the process. That’s why I am so grateful for my family and friends because they constantly reminded me throughout the experience ‘don’t forget the work that you have done on yourself.’
‘I go through periods of being angry, but I need to remember I went through this for a reason to build my confidence even more and know I can get through anything.’
Shake, who claims he was edited badly by Netflix producers, has not only faced a backlash from viewers – but his fellow cast mates have also cut contact with him after tensions reached an all-time high on the Love Is Blind reunion.
Despite Shake believing he has been portrayed as the show’s ‘villain’, Deepti says he made far worse comments, of which she wasn’t prepared to reveal, off camera.
‘It hit a nerve with everyone’: Shake has not only faced a backlash from viewers – but his fellow cast mates have also cut contact with him after tensions reached an all-time high on the Love Is Blind reunion
She said: ‘My cast mates felt it was disrespectful and out of line for him to speak in that way.
‘Everyone is entitled to have their own opinion but it wasn’t just me, he was talking to the other cast mates very degradingly and disrespectfully and it hit a nerve with everyone, we had enough.
‘I’m not going to get into the specifics but he got a good edit. He said much worse and not just to me, sometimes he just talks disrespectfully about women in general and that’s outside of the cast.
‘We started to notice that behavior when we hung out with him after filming wrapped. All of us have distanced ourselves and that’s okay.’
Bride to be: Deepti, pictured with fellow brides Natalie, Lyanna, Mallory, and Danielle, ahead of her wedding to veterinarian Shake
Kyle Abrams, who was engaged to Shaina Hurley, spoke out in admiration for Deepti during the reunion episode, prompting speculation from fans that the pair, who also grew close during the dating experience, are now an item.
But Deepti says they are ‘just good friends.’
She said: ‘A lot of people don’t know that Kyle was my no2 person in the pods. We did connect a lot, we spent hours and hours talking and after filming wrapped, we started talking again.
‘He’s my best friend, biggest support system, and I am grateful for him and the rest of the cast for supporting me. I don’t know about anything more at this stage because we’re just good friends.’
‘We’re just good friends’: Kyle Abrams spoke out in admiration for Deepti during the reunion episode, prompting speculation from fans that the pair are now an item (Deepti pictured with co-stars Salvador, Kyle, and Shayne)