Bharti aspired to a career in films at a young age, and started to get offers at age 14, while she was doing some modelling assignments. After several unsuccessful attempts, she made her debut with a lead role in the successful Telugu drama Bobbili Raja (1990), aged 16. After featuring in a number of high-grossing Telugu films, she progressed to Bollywood films in 1992 with the action thriller Vishwatma. Bharti went on to have commercial success alongside acclaimed actors such as Govinda and Rishi Kapoor in films like Shola Aur Shabnam and Deewana, respectively; the latter of which garnered her a Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut. She acted in 14 Hindi films between 1992 and 1993, which is to date an unbroken record in Hindi cinema. Although a teenager, Bharti played adult roles in all her films.