Divya Dutta was born on 25 September 1977 in Ludhiana, Punjab. Her father died when she was seven years old and her mother Malini Dutta raised Divya and her brother single-handedly. Her mother was a doctor. Her mother is an inspiration to her and describes her mother as “fearless and professional” and a “fun mom at home.” Divya Dutta did her schooling at Sacred Heart Convent in Ludhiana. She started her career as a model and did modeling for regional commercials in Punjab. She also featured in a music video “Romeo” by music duo Basement Jaxx, from London, England in 2001. She made her Bollywood debut with the movie Ishq Mein Jeena Ishq Mein Marna in 1994 but the movie failed at the box office. Her next movie was Surakshaa where she had a supporting role. The movie featured Suniel Shetty, Aditya Pancholi, Saif Ali Khan, and Sheeba. It did average business at the box office. Her next movie as a lead was the 1995 movie Veergati with Salman Khan but the movie tanked at the ticket window.
She subsequently worked in many movies mostly as a supporting actress such as Agni Sakshi, Chote Sarkar, Raja ki Ayegi Baarat, Dava, Bade Miyan Chote Miyan. Her next movie as the lead actress was Iski Topi Uske Sarr which failed miserably at the box office. She made her debut in the Punjabi movie industry with the romantic drama movie Shaheed-e-Mohabbat Boota Singh, opposite Gurdas Maan. The film was also set during the 1947 Indian partition and was based on the real-life story of a Sikh Boota Singh. The movie was a big hit in Punjab and her acting was appreciated by all.
She is one of the very few actors who worked in a variety of roles in various film genres in many languages. . She acted in Bollywood, Punjabi, Malayalam and English movies. Her first big breakthrough movie was the Yash Chopra directed movie Veer-Zaara for which she received Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award. After that, she did movies like Welcome To Sajjanpur, Stanley Ka Dabba which cemented her position as a good actress. She won the IIFA Award for Best Supporting Actress for the role Jalebi in Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s Delhi-6. Mehra again cast her in the Farhan Akhtar starrer movie Bhaag Milkha Bhaag based on the life of Milkha Singh in 2013, she played the role of Milkha Singh’s elder sister. She was nominated in IIFA for Best Supporting Actress. Her role in Sriram Raghavan’s Badlapur was also appreciated a lot. To date, she featured in above 60 feature films including two international productions. She also worked in the television industry, playing the role of Purnima Banerjee in the serial Samvidhaan.