Ratna is fearless, a quality which sometimes even the educated lot from urban India do not possess. Log kya kahenge is so deeply imbibed into us that even when there are no people around, we think about what they will think about our actions and not what we should do at the given moment.
Speaking of Ratna, even after coming from rural India, a village which still doesn’t let widows become a part of events or occasions that are considered auspicious, this female doesn’t become a victim of her circumstances. She shows the courage and bravery to stand up for herself and for the ones she loves. From finding work in a metro city like Mumbai to staying alone with a male employer without batting an eyelid is truly courageous. And what makes Ratna an ideal for every woman is her quality of not giving up on dreams, come what may.
Even after becoming a widow at 19, she turns her life around by earning her own bread. She doesn’t stop there. When she gets the chance, she chases her dream of becoming a FASHION DESIGNER. Mind you, being a maid, she dreams of becoming a fashion designer, not a tailor. When we hang out with people whose social status is higher than us and when they don’t treat us well, it breaks our confidence. After a point of time, we start questioning our self-worth and when we get a chance, we keep down our weapons and run out of the battlefield. But Ratna is not like us. She has the guts to face the world all alone and silently carve her own way without challenging society or its perspective on things. She gracefully accepts reality and then changes it in her own way.
What makes Ratna special? Her ability to reject a man who she thinks might just be using her. When he kisses her and she kisses him back, she doesn’t regret it either but still has the guts to look him into the eye and ask him to forget what just happened. All of it is more appreciable because she is rejecting a man she had long back fallen for. With her rejection, she makes it so clear that though she has loved the man’s qualities and the constant support and compassion he showed towards her, she is unwilling to use their fondness for each other to change her social and economic status. Even in 2020, Ratna is a woman who falls for ‘support’ more than affection. Because that is rare, love is not. Love can always be faked and hence she trusts Ashwin’s actions, not his words. That is why when Ashwin confesses his feelings to her, she draws a clear, bold line to safeguard her self-respect.
When Ratna figures out that Ashwin is serious about her, the way she puts forth her scenario to understand whether it is acceptable to him, whether he has the courage to fight against the society for a love that is so unusual, against the society’s ‘normal’ is again something only a woman of substance can do. When there is a man standing right in front of you who can change your life for the better in 360 degrees and you still question him about his honesty is not every woman’s cup of tea, especially when the road ahead without him is full of storms.
But still she is not a typical Bollywood or Balaji heroine who keeps rejecting the man’s positive efforts towards her. When Ashwin gifts her a tailoring machine, she gracefully accepts his gift as it would take her one step closer to her dream. She appreciates the gifts life hands over to her but is still intelligent enough to question the human beings who bring those gifts for her.