7 min read

Women’s Day Spl: 8 Fictional Characters Who Broke The Shackles Of Stereotypes And Rose To Heroism Like Shashi In English Vinglish

Vatsal Thakore

March 5, 2021

7 min


From Swara Bhasker’s Sakshi to Kriti Sanon’s Bitti, a look at female characters who broke the stereotypes that the patriarchal society had bound them in.

International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8 worldwide, to celebrate the achievements of women all around the world. For years, patriarchy has been prevalent in the world and has bound women in shackles of stereotypes. With International Women’s Day, the world also celebrates the gradual defeat of patriarchy, with women #BreakingTheBarriers set for them by society. Celebrating that, here are characters from some of our favourite shows and films who broke the stereotypes and moved beyond that.


Shashi – English Vinglish

English Vinglish on ZEE5
Source: ZEE5

Sridevi in English Vinglish plays the role of Shashi, a simple housewife, for whom her family is her world. However, she is the subject of constant taunts and mockery from her husband and her daughter, for her inability to speak English. She was also bound by the stereotype of being a typical, conservative homemaker. After she visits her sister in New York, she finds her freedom and self-respect by secretly learning English and goes on to prove to her family that they were nothing but judgemental about her.

Watch English Vinglish on ZEE5.

Kaali – Kaali

Source: ZEE5

Paoli Dam in Kaali plays the title role of Kaali, who was a simple mother, living a normal life with her son. One night when her son gets critically injured, she takes charge to gather money for his treatment. In the journey, she involuntarily gets involved in battling a drug mafia. She was deemed powerless by the goons and criminals but her strength and determination brings the whole criminal empire to its knees.

Watch Kaali on ZEE5.

Chandni and Radha – Dev DD 2

Source: ZEE5

Dev DD 2 revolves around the love and friendship of Devika Dharam Dwivedi. It also depicts the love story of her best friend Chandni, with a girl named Radha. Chandni’s mother, along with most of the people around her have set a stereotype that only heterosexual relationships are possible. Chandni and Radha break that stereotype by getting married, and that too, in a grand ceremony.

Watch Dev DD 2 on ZEE5.

Sakshi – Veere Di Wedding

Source: ZEE5

Veere Di Wedding is the story of four friends who reunite when one of them is planning to get married. While the friends discuss their life, we get to know about the story of Sakshi (Swara Bhaskar). She is separated from her husband without a divorce and is living with her parents. This creates a lot of gossip about her in society and people taunt her for living with her parents, and not her husband (as per the stereotypes). However, she proves herself to be a self-dependent and determined woman, who happily breaks societal norms and doesn’t care what anyone has to say about her.

Watch Veere Di Wedding on ZEE5.

Bitti – Bareilly Ki Barfi

Source: ZEE5

Kriti Sanon in Bareilly Ki Barfi plays the role of Bitti, a tomboyish girl, who likes to live life without agreeing to any norms. She is someone who likes to drink and smoke, and even her father does not mind these habits of hers. But, society does! People constantly point fingers at her and question her, saying, ‘how can she smoke despite being a girl?’ Bitti being carefree that she is, cares little about those stereotypes and stays true to herself.

Watch Bareilly Ki Barfi on ZEE5.

Mahi  – Teri Meri Ikk Jindri

Teri Meri Ikk Jindri
Source: ZEE5

Teri Meri Ikk Jindri is a show on Zee TV, about two lovers, Jogi and Mahi. Mahi, in the show, is someone who loves cars and driving, and to pursue her hobby, has chosen to become a cab driver. She is often asked about how is it possible for a woman to be a cab driver. But she happily breaks that stereotype, excelling and flaunting her driving skills.

Watch Teri Meri Ikk Jindri on ZeeTV and ZEE5.

Also read: #BreakingTheBarriers: Anuradha, Sujata and other characters who tirelessly lift other women up

Mariam – Mee Raqsam

Mee Raqsam film on ZEE5
Source: ZEE5

Mee Raqsam is a film about Mariam, a young Muslim girl who wants to learn and excel at the Indian classical dance form, Bharatnatyam. She faces a lot of backlash from all sections of society, who claim that a Muslim girl should not be learning Indian classical dance. Mee Raqsam depicts her journey of excelling at Bharatanatyam and defeating the backward views of society.

Watch Mee Raqsam on ZEE5.

Aastha – The Married Woman

Source: ZEE5

The Married Woman is an upcoming ZEE5 Original show, about a woman named Aastha, who is bound by society’s norms and definitions of a ‘perfect woman’. She later finds her freedom and comfort in the arms of another woman, Peeplika, but faces the stereotypical arguments of a homosexual relationship not being possible. Set in 1992, the show is based on a novel, A Married Woman, by Manju Kapoor. The Married Woman premieres on ZEE5 on Women’s Day, 8 March.

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Watch the movie Headhunters online on ZEE5 in HD.

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