Women Talk

Mumbai Diaries 26/11: From Ananya to Chitra Das, Women Who Stood in the Crisis

Mumbai Diaries 26/11, where efforts of women were acknowledged. Women who handled crises like a pro.


The 26/11 incident was perhaps one of the scariest attacks the country had encountered. From the lives of the people in The Taj Palace to the lives of hundreds and thousands of patients in Mumbai’s Bombay General Hospital, the incident tested the bravery of all. It was the combined effort of the police, doctors and the people in crisis that successful rescues were made. While many lost their lives in the incident, many lives were saved. For some reason, we need to acknowledge the efforts of women who were there in the crisis and managed to battle vigorously.

Women of Mumbai Diaries 26/11 led in the crisis

Ananya – the woman who managed to rescue the Residents at The Taj Palace

Ananya (played by Tina Desai) is a woman in her mid-twenties who was the manager at The Taj Palace, heading an extremely prestigious event attended by dignitaries from across the country. When the first attacks happened, Ananya maintained peace among the guests. And well, she simply used the best of her intelligence to do it. As the situation worsened and got no one to devise a rescue for them, Ananya managed to rescue her guests with her fair sense of the logistics and understanding of hotel routes.

Read more:- Remembering 9/11: The attacks that shook the entire world

Had she not been a woman, the task might have been easier for her. While figuring out ways to maintain peace and calm, she was repeatedly questioned about her leadership skills as a woman. “Who gives authority to a woman,” Dr Parekh said to Ananya, to which she said, “This woman will keep you safe”. She battled the distrust people had in her rescue plan; she executed the plan and devised safe exits for her guests thrice, not once, not twice. Apparently, she is the one who had close encounters with the terrorists among all the protagonists in the series. Still, with her conscience, she managed to deal with the worst.

Chitra Das – The Unsung Warrior

Grit, passion, wisdom and resilience. That’s how Chitra Das is. Chitra Das’s character, phenomenally played by Konkana Sen Sharma, is a woman who is the Social Development Officer of the Bombay General Hospital. This woman is a medical professional who can’t practise, irrespective of her knowledge. She knows the history of almost every patient in the hospital. Still, even in a crisis, she could not operate on any patient. Yet Chitra is the one binding the whole situation. She has been called out for being a woman and shamed for not having a licence to practise the profession, yet she knows how to withstand them all.

Sujata and Divya Parekh

Sujata and Divya Parekh, the two practising doctors who have their first day in the hospital, got to have perhaps the worst day in their life. Sujata is a woman from a minority community who is constantly called out for being so. Yet, she remains unaffected by this and continuously fights to save patients and maintain peace. Parallel to this, Divya Parekh, who has depression and anxiety issues, manages to stay calm even with the news of her parents being in the same Taj Hotel from where all the dead bodies are coming. She manages to help people resume in whichever form she can.

Nurse Cherian and Vidhya

Nurse Cherian and Nurse Vidhya are the ones who know the in and out of the hospital. These two subordinates were the ones who were needed by all, from the head doctors to the patients to the visitors. When the head of the hospital, Subramanian, came to her and said “chin up Cherian, it’s time to save this hospital”, it showed what Cherain meant to the place.

This series will give you a close look about the role of a woman in crisis, whose ability is often doubted because of her gender.

Edit- Ayushi Mittal

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Ishika Aggarwal

Can write, shoot, listen, talk and procrastinate. A feminist at heart, Ishika is an avid writer and multimedia person who loves talking about women, realism, and society. When not working she is either seen watching films or making one.
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