The star of new BBC medical comedy series This Is Going To Hurt says her character is “complex, well written” and important for on-screen diversity.

Ambika Mod, who appears alongside Ben Whishaw in the series, said such parts for south Asian women are “rare”.

The newcomer plays junior trainee doctor Shruti in the show, which is based on the book of the same name by Adam Kay.

“As soon as I read the script I thought ‘this is mine, no-one else can do it. No-one else should do it’.” she told the PA news agency.

“That’s a very special, unique feeling that you don’t get with a lot of things you audition for.

“To see a character like Shruti is really rare.

“She’s so complex, she’s so well written, she exists in and of her own right and she has an amazing arc.

“You just don’t get young south Asian women written like that.

“When you’re auditioning you see a lot of the same tropes again and again, so not only was Shruti as a character really refreshing to play but I also think she’s important.

“It’s who she represents in terms of her job, her age group, her ethnic minority, her class – she’s a working-class character.

“But at the same time she is just one person, she can’t possibly represent every person who comes under those umbrellas.

“I just tried to make her experience as authentic and real as possible.”

Mod, 26, said she and Bafta-winner Whishaw had been given a “crash course” in how to perform certain medical operations, including a caesarean section, with three on-set medical advisers to make sure “no corners were cut”.

“It was so when we filmed the operation scenes it looked as real as possible,” she said.

This Is Going To Hurt – BBC One
Ambika Mod appears alongside Ben Whishaw (PA)

“The prosthetics, all the layers that would actually be in the human body, were exactly the same. We had to cut through the layer exactly the same.”

She added: “I could definitely do a caesarean now if I needed to, definitely…”

Asked about working with Wishaw, who voices the animated version of Paddington Bear, she said: “It was great, although unfortunately he didn’t have the body of Paddington Bear.

“That was really devastating.

She continued: “We all know Ben is one of the greatest actors of his generation but he’s also so beautiful and kind and modest and approachable and humble and really took me under his wing.

“He made me a better actor.”

This Is Going To Hurt airs at 9pm on Tuesdays on BBC One and episodes are available on BBC iPlayer.