The simple, beautiful and talented Anupama, who is also the heroine of the novel ‘MAHASHWETA’ by Sudha Murty, is my favorite female. While reading the novel, the character of Anupama made me go through her happiness, romance, pain, anguish and then triumph.

In the beginning, the character of Anupama is portrayed in an extremely simple manner. I almost imagined that she was just another stereotype female who leaves her career for a happy married life with her Prince Charming, who was totally infatuated with her beauty.

However, this was not to be. She suddenly discovers a white patch on her foot. When the Doctor confirms it as Leukoderma, she is sent back home by her dominating and powerful Mother-in-law. Her husband is abroad and is quite insensitive to her feelings. She gets no support at her home either. Her step-mother is worried that the social stigma attached to her condition will harm the future of other family members too and keeps pestering her. Her condition becomes so pitiable that she contemplates suicide.

However, at this stage, she reflects inwards and an urge to reconstruct her life fosters. She goes to the city of dreams, Mumbai to spread her wings. After some initial problems, she slowly builds up her hope, strength and courage. It is said that ‘Fortune helps those who help themselves’. Destiny does bless her and she soon carves out a niche for herself in the field of her expertise – drama. She not only makes a place for herself in the society, but also finds a way into the heart of one her admirers. When she decides neither to go back into times with her erstwhile husband nor go with her new admirer, I feel like saluting Anupama.

The novel is a true reflection of Indian Society and I see so many females going through the anguish of suffering. Dowry and such other abhorring customs have become a part and parcel of our society. Over and above that, if a woman goes through some medical problems, she is often discarded as a dirty robe.

The character of Anupama made me reflect inwards and question ‘WHY?” Expecting the society to change is fool hardiness. Why not have more belief in oneself? If one decides, just like Anupama, to make her own little space, one can. Any woman always has a lot of strength, courage and determination. But they normally lie dormant, hidden and unknown to her. Once Anupama decided that she wanted to tread on her own path, she was successful. And so can any other woman be.

I salute Anupama, who had a beautiful soul – a soul which only wished goodness and happiness for everyone. The body was blemished by a medical condition, but her soul remained unblemished and pure. It retained its luster and sheen and showed her the path towards her ultimate happiness. May it keep glowing and shimmering the life of many more women!!!


About the Author


Neelam Saxena Chandra is an Engineering graduate from VNIT and has done her Post Graduation Diploma in IM&HRD and also in Finance. She has completed a summer course in Finance from London School of read more...

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