Who Are The 4 Indian Women Who Made It To The BBC 100 Women 2020 List?

Released earlier this week, BBC's 100 Women List features four inspiring and amazing Indian women. Here's who they are!

Released earlier this week, BBC’s 100 Women List features four inspiring and amazing Indian women. Here’s who they are!

The year 2020 has mostly brought with it, a pandemic, lockdown and a lot of negativity. However, it was also the year we realised how correct Beyoncé really was, that it is indeed women who run the world. Kamala Harris was elected as the USA’s first-ever female VP and New Zealand’s Jacinda Ardern who won her second term as NZ’s Prime Minister. Women have truly shown us their power and might.

But wait, there’s more! Early this week, BBC released its BBC 100 women list. Every year the BBC honours 100 women from across the world for their noteworthy contribution in four categories – knowledge, leadership, creativity and identity. And this year too, the list has some amazing women on it.

The Unsung Hero

More than anything, what made me incredibly happy was the first person on the list. She was the ‘Unsung Hero,’ the countless women across the globe who have made an impact in a world that came to an almost standstill.

The ‘Unsung Hero’ is every doctor who was on the forefront since the pandemic began, exposing herself to a virus we still know very little about. She was every nurse in every hospital who worked day and night, making sure her patients were fine. The Unsung Hero is every woman who stood up and decided to do her bit!

While each and every woman on the list is noteworthy on her own, I am here to tell you about the four Indian women on the list.

Bilkis Bano aka Shaheen Bagh ki Dadi

Known as Shaheen Bagh ki dadi Bilkis Bano, 82, definitely made the news as one of the women peacefully protesting the CAA Bill in Delhi. She became the face of the protest. Bilkis Dadi was also referred to as the ‘voice of the marginalised’ by journalist Rana Ayub in an essay she wrote for the TIME magazine. She was also the only Indian woman to be featured in the TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2020.


The only female member of the band The Castless Collective, Isaivani is the next Indian on the list. She is one of the very few gaana singers in the country. Gaana music is something that has emerged from the working-class neighbourhood from North Chennai and was until recently, a male-dominated space. According to a report in The News Minute, Isaivani was quoted saying she hopes this list helps bring more women in the space of gaana music.

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Manasi Joshi

A para-Indian athlete, Manasi Joshi is currently the world para-badminton champion. Joshi is an engineer by profession and following an accident eight years ago, she had to have her leg amputated. Post the accident, the only thing helping her was badminton. Helping her and how! She isn’t just the world para-badminton champion, in October, she became the only Indian para-athlete to have a Barbie doll modelled after her!

Riddhima Pandey

At 12, Riddhima Pandey knows way more about climate change and what to do about it than you and I would! She was among the 16 children who filed a complaint to protest lack of government action on climate change at the UN Climate Action Summit in 2019. In 2017, she filed a petition in the National Green Tribunal against the government for not taking any action against climate change.

This list does make me think, 2020 may not be so awful after all. What do you think?

Picture credits: BBC 

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Reader, writer and a strong feminist, I survive on coffee and cuddles from dogs! Pop culture, especially Bollywood, runs in my veins while I crack incredibly lame jokes and puns! read more...

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