A man in the 250 strong audiences got up to say this to our panel. “I have left a session with Shashi Tharoor and come to listen to you. He is talking of the past, while you all are about our future. For the sake of my daughter I want to listen to the new thinking of women.” This was at the Times Literature Fest, at our discussion titled India@70 : The Future Is Female.

In what can be called a firebrand, fierce and fearless conversation, we spoke of everything from success to sexuality with Mallika Dua, Sapna Bhavnani and Kanika Tekriwal. Their experiences, though shocking and stereotypical, have forced these women to give a damn about what people around her say.

Kanika fought cancer at 22 when her family was already scouting a Marwari boy for marriage. “Fortunately cancer saved me and let me follow my dreams,” she says. She runs an aviation-tech company that function like the uber of private jets. For long she fought the perception of people who questioned her. “You run an aviation company?” challenging her as a woman at the helm of it.

Sapna had three failed marriages and a tumultuous relationship with her mom because never wanted to ‘settle.’ Today she runs MadOrWot – a hair saloon that’s frequented by many. Remember Dhoni’s crazy hairdos? That’s Sapna’s talent. But beyond that she has adopted a village and is a champion of Stop Acid Attacks, something she passionately works for.

Mallika Dua, grew up in a liberal home and pretty much did what she wanted to. She never knew of another way. Until she picked being a comedy star and actor where she faced and discussed horrific stereotypes and stayed amused about the way people made assumptions about a digital incarnation on instagram and snapchat.

These firebrand conversations promise to get you going.

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