Priyanka Chopra Talks About Her Friend Meghan Markle and the Perils of Being a 'Plus-One'

"We just became friends, like two girls would," Chopra tells PEOPLE

Priyanka Chopra and Meghan Markle. Photo: Meghan Markle/Instagram

Priyanka Chopra has seen first-hand how her friend Meghan Markle has often been identified by her high-profile relationship with Prince Harry.

“Sometimes women become plus-ones, and sometimes guys become plus-ones,” she told PEOPLE at the 2017 Global Goals Awards on Tuesday evening in N.Y.C. hosted by Melinda Gates and U.N. Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed. “It’s who is on the radar more. [But] I think in an overall scheme of things, it’s harder for girls to be able to make their own stand for what they are. And I’m a girl love kind of girl.”

The Quantico star, 35, says she first met Suits star Markle, 36, at the annual ELLE Women in Television dinner. Beyond television, the women share a passion for humanitarian work: Chopra is a UNICEF global goodwill ambassador, while Markle works with organizations like World Vision and One Young World.

“We bonded as actors,” she says of their friendship. “We just became friends, like two girls would.”

Chopra recently spoke out about Markle’s talked-about Vanity Fair cover, telling Entertainment Tonight she found it to be “a little sexist,” in its focus on Markle’s romance.

As for something that would surprise people about Markle, Chopra was more tight-lipped, joking: “Nothing that I can say!”

Chopra’s been pretty busy herself: She attended the Emmy Awards on Sunday evening and said the show kept her on the edge of her seat — in particular, the big wins for people of color.

“It was cool to see the kind of diversity that was represented at the Emmys this year, especially for a South Asian like me,” she said. “Whether it was Lena, whether it was Aziz, whether it was Donald. There were so many people that made such big wins.”

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