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In my opinion, there has never been a better time to be a rather interesting combination of Indian and female. Additional brownie points if like me, you were born in the 80s and 90s (a.k.a. millennial). Our generation can proudly claim to have grown up in two worlds, as offsprings of the ‘80s and ’90s. And we’ve done it in style. Dancing our way through Madhuri’s DhakDhak, all the way to Shakira’s WakaWaka to Ed Sheeran’s Shape Of You. Playing hide-n-seek and lock-key in our neighborhoods, before video games and TV shows and eventually smartphones took over. Possibly the last generation to experience the pleasure of actual conversation, before life went virtual. We’ve seen it all.

But as women of this generation, above anything else, we’re a generation that’s learned to accept and reclaim our femininity, like never before. And celebrate it, in all its forms to experience the joys of what it means to be an Indian woman. We’re still not there yet, but we’ve come a long way.

In fact, if legend is to be believed, one day, the Almighty Lord, satisfied with the art of making humans, chose to focus on the making of a new masterpiece. And he does that, quite successfully, I might say. When he decided to make what he decided to call the Bhartiya Naari,Indian woman.

The Bhartiya Naari can essentially be from anywhere. She could be from Benares. Or she could belong to Bengaluru. Or Surat. Or Jabalpur. She could be tall, or short. Fair, or dusky. She could be clad in a cotton FabIndia Kurti, chappals, and kajal, perched in a corner of the Mumbai local, reading Murakami. Or you might spot her in a cotton sari and matching silver earrings, braving the monsoon, scurrying over the puddles of muddy water in the potholed streets of Kolkata as she makes her way to pick her kids up from school. Or she might be in a business suit with high heels to match, as she hurries out of her corporate office in Gurgaon to catch the evening show of her favorite Khan’s Bollywood release on a Friday evening.

She lives in today. With lessons and learning from the past, and dreams and desires for tomorrow. She is a citizen of the world, yet she carries her ethnicity as a badge of pride. She’s learned to dine at fine fancy restaurants, where she can pronounce the names of the finest wines. Yet, she also craves her favorite chaat and bhajiya from the roadside thela every now and then. She carries little black dresses, Kanjeevaram and Benarasi saris with equal finesse. Her constant balancing of her ethnic roots with her modern mindset might come across as a tussle, even a challenge, yet she manages this art with aplomb and grace.

As a member of the tribe myself, I chose to create this platform to pay my own little tribute to the rather delectable character called Bhartiya Naari. One who like I mentioned before is her own paradox. She is unique, in all her shades, with all her quirks, idiosyncrasies and even imperfections, that make her, her. If she isn’t a piece of art, that’s worthy of celebration, I don know what is.

Look around, you might just find her. And here’s to being her, knowing her, and celebrating her. Cheers, ladies!