10 Years Of Chak De! India – What are Kabir Khan’s Girls Up To Now?

Coached by the defamed player, Kabir Khan, a heterogeneous array of 16 girls, hand-picked from the length and breadth of the country are roped in to play for the Indian women’s hockey team. They are a stubborn lot, including a hot tempered Punjabi girl (Tanya Abrol); a newly married goalie (Vidya Malavade); a tomboy from a village in Haryana (Chitrashi Rawat); a forward (Sagarika Ghatge) whose fiancé, a cricket star, thinks hockey is much beneath him; and the experienced player (Shilpa Shukla) who needles the coach. Today, let’s celebrate the 10th anniversary of Chak De! India, a movie which gave me major “goals” in life and because of which “Mujhe states ke naam na sunai dete hai na dikhai dete hai … sirf ek mulk ka naam sunai deta hai I-N-D-I-A.” This is how life has changed for these girls who successfully ignited the patriot in me.

#1 Bindya Naik- The Rebel

Shilpa Shukla Chak De Movie

After taking home the Screen Award for Best Supporting Actress for Chak De India, Shilpa Shukla, starred in another critically acclaimed film- B.A. Pass. For portraying the role of a seductress, Shilpa bagged her maiden Filmfare Award and received great reception for her performance. Very selective about her work and the kind of roles she essays, Shilpa is still very much active in the film fraternity.

#2 Preeti Sabarwal- The Go-getter

Sagarika Ghatge Chak De

A national level athlete, Sagarika Ghatge is in love with a famous Indian cricketer, just like her on-screen avatar in Chak De! India. Recently, the actress got engaged to Zaheer Khan, a former cricketer, after dating him for a couple of years. Since her debut in 2007, she has appeared in a number of commercials and Marathi films. She also went on to be a finalist in Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi (season 6). In early 2017, the actress featured alongside Naseeruddin Shah, and Arshad Warsi in the detective film Irada.

#3 Komal Chautala- The Badass

Chitranshi Rawat Chak De

This ‘chota packet’ came with a hell lot of ‘dhamaka’. Without a doubt, one of the most interesting characters in the movie, Chitrashi Rawat has been a hockey player off-screen as well. Starred in numerous other films after her dream-like debut, she has furthered her horizon and now actively does stand-up comedy too.

#4 Vidya Sharma- The Dependable

Vidya Sharma Chak De

Post leading her team to a World Cup victory in the movie, Vidya Malvade has been more or less missing from the limelight. She has appeared in a string of box-office flops like Tum Milo Toh Sahi (2009), Striker (2010), and 1920: Evil Returns (2012).

#5 Balbir Kaur- The Pressure Cooker

Balbir Kaur Chak De

The feisty Punjaban, Balbit Kaur aka Tanya Abrol had no ‘thand’ in life. Post her launch in Chak De! India, Tanya has mostly confined herself to television, where she appears as ‘Jaywanti Shinde’ in CID.

#6 Aliya Bose- The Free-spirited

Alia Bose Chak De

She didn’t give a damn. She was sassy, chill and fun to be with. Anaitha Nair is exactly like that in real life too. After appearing in a few regional and Hindi films, she gave it all up, to get married to her longtime boyfriend Akhil Nair. The couple is also blessed with a baby girl.

#7 Gul Iqbal – The Timid and Shy One

Gul Iqbal Chak De

A shy girl, who sets on a journey to make her family proud, Gul Iqbal, initially hesitates to take up hockey but eventually ends up embracing glory. Arya Menon, who played Gul iqbal, after her tryst with fame went on to appear in the Tamil movie Nanne Ennul Illai (2010). Arya now owns the advertising company, Remarquer and has produced the Gujarati documentary movie Amdavad Ma Famous for which She won the Swarna Kamal at the National Awards in 2016.

#8 Rani Dispotta – The Patient One

Rani Dispotta Chak De

Hailing from an underdeveloped region, Rani Dispotta, inspite of lacking basic amenities, is fantastic at her game. Seema Azmi essayed the character of Rani and has since then appeared in movies such as Saas Bahu Aur Sensex (2008), Aarakshan (2011), and Rambhajjan Zindabad (2017)

If you’re a Bollywood buff like me who’s also celebrating the 10th anniversary of this cult film, click here to take another trip down the memory lane, because “yeh tumhari zindagi ke sabse khaas sattar minute hai”. #favoritequote

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Fatema Arif

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