I finally watched Neerja. I could not control my tears from the very first scene. A loving daughter, a doting sister, the lifeline of this family is woken up reluctantly by her mother to go to work. She is gone and the family gets to know that some trouble has come her way. They hope for the best. But God had other plans.
Throughout the movie, there are flashbacks of Neerja’s marriage. How she used to be humiliated by her husband – for being a model, for not being a good cook, for wanting to be in touch with her father regularly. Neerja’s husband had also written a letter to her father – insulting him on how a respectable father would never let his daughter be a model. On how he should not be talking to his own flesh and blood so frequently.
Why am I talking about all this and not about how she saved so many lives on the plane that day?
This woman had exceptional presence of mind. Most people would have panicked in this situation. She did not. Amidst that stress, she could think clearly and decide what was best for all. And finally, what a heart she had to take bullets protecting three unknown children?
How many of us would be able to do that?
She received awards for her bravery. We all salute her. She has become immortal because all parents are taking their children to watch the movie to show them how to be a strong woman. How to have courage in any situation. As her father rightly teaches her:
“Never do anything wrong, never tolerate any injustice.”
What would have happened if Neerja stayed in that abusive marriage and tried to adjust? Everyday she would hear somebody tell her how incompetent and inadequate she is. How many flaws she has. How he is doing her a favour by being with her, and tolerating her. What would have happened to her self-esteem and her potential?
Have we all felt like that Neerja at some point? Where somebody has made us feel miserable about ourselves to the point where we have started believing it too? Is it worth taking it? Are we ever going to reach our true potential in life and become what we are meant to become, and achieve what we are capable of achieving if we continue to live with people / in situations that tarnish our self-respect and happiness every single day and moment?
We are all special, ladies. God has made us strong, compassionate and nurturing. Don’t let anybody / anything dampen your spirits. You are so much more than the world may perceive you to be!
Happy Women’s Day! Don’t settle for anything less than what you deserve! Let us choose to remove the negativity from our lives first. Our life and happiness will catch up!
I have not done any research on Neerja Bhanot. Whatever I have written above is based on the movie. I salute her and her family for raising a child who emerged as God that day, saving so many lives. May she be at peace wherever she is.