Great music has always had a mass fan following in our country, but back in the 90s, it had a whole different vibe to it. Today, pop songs are largely comprised of fast-paced raps and remixes. However, growing up in the late 90s and early 2000s meant original songs. We still remember each song and everyone who featured in them.

However, a lot has changed over time, including these brilliant pop girls. Here’s a look at what they have been up to. Read on.

1. Rakhi Sawant 

After making her movie debut with Agnichakra (1997), she starred in several minor roles and dance numbers in movies like Joru Ka Ghulam (2000) and Main Hoon Na (2004). In 2005, she garnered popularity when she appeared in her iconic music video Pardesiya. In 2006, she appeared in the first season of the reality television show Bigg Boss and was amongst the top four finalists. She also participated in other reality shows like Nach Baliye (2007) and Rakhi Ka Swayamwar (2009). She participated in Bigg Boss 14 (2020-21) but walked out after opting for the cash prize. She was last seen in her music video Dream Mein Entry, which was released in June this year. 

2. Ayesha Takia 

Long before she made her acting debut in Taarzan: The Wonder Car, she began her career as a model at the tender age of 13. She made a home in several hearts when she was featured in Falguni Pathak’s Meri Chunar Udd Udd Jaye. She then appeared in numerous other movies like Socha Na Tha (2005), Dor (2006 and Wanted (2009). In 2009, she married restaurateur Farhan Azmi, with whom she also has a son, Mikail Azmi. She’s no longer involved in showbiz but is currently an active supporter of wildlife protection. 

3. Shefali Jariwala 

She instantly became a household name with the song Kaanta Laga (2002). In 2004, she made a guest appearance in the movie Mujhse Shaadi Karogi. The same year, she married Harmeet Singh. However, they got divorced in 2009 and she tied the knot with Parag Tyagi in 2014. In 2013, she participated in a dance reality show Nach Baliye with her now-husband, Parag Tyagi. She was also featured in the web series Baby Come Naa as the protagonist. She was last seen in the reality show Bigg Boss 13 (2019) as a contestant but was eliminated later. 

4. Yana Gupta 

Long before making her first appearance with the song Babuji Zara Dheere Chalo from the movie Dum, she kick-started her modelling career at the age of 16. In 2001, she entered the modelling industry and became the brand ambassador of Lakme. She released the book How To Love Your Body And Get The Body You Love and a music album in 2009. In 2011, she starred in an item song in Murder 2. She also participated in several reality shows like Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi 1, Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa and Life Mein Ek Baar. She was last seen in the item song Joganiya from the movie Dassehra (2018).  

5. Alisha Chinai 

Being one of the most famous pop singers out there, she began her singing career with the album Jadoo in 1985. She then sang a number of classic songs like Mr India’s Kaate Nahin Katthe (1987), Tridev’s Raat Bhar Jaam Se (1989), Vijaypath’s Ruk Ruk Ruk (1994) and Raja Hindustani’s Tere Ishq Mein Nachenge (1996). In 1995, she released her most popular album, Made In India, which become one of the highest-selling pop albums of that time. She made a comeback in the movie industry with Mujhse Dosti Karoge’s Oh My Darling song. Her career reached a new height after the song Kajra Re (2005), which even won her a Filmfare Award for Best Female Playback Singer. She was last seen as a judge on Indian Idol S3 in 2007.  

6. Riya Sen 

After starting her acting career as a child actress in the movie Vishkanya (1991), she tried her luck in several movies like Style (2001), Xcuse Me (2003) and Jhankaar Beats (2003). She garnered popularity after appearing in Falguni Pathak’s Yaad Piya Ki Aane Lagi (1998). After that, she was featured in a number of music videos like Jhumka Gira Re, Jab Samne Tum and Dil Kahin Hosh Kahin. Apart from acting, she has been featured in different magazines and television commercials. She was last seen in MX Player’s web series Pati Patni Aur Who (2020). 

7. Aamna Sharif 

She started her career by starring in a number of music videos like Dil Ka Aalam (2001), Yeh Kisne Jaadu Kiya (2002), Chalne Lagi Hain Hawayein (2002), Neendon Mein Khwabon Ka (2002) and Laamaseelu Soora (2005). In 2003, she made her acting debut with the show Kahiin To Hoga alongside Rajeev Khandelwal. In 2012, she starred in the show Hongey Judaa Na Hum. She made her movie debut with Aloo Chaat (2009) alongside Aftab Shivdasani. She then starred in other movies like Aao Wish Karein (2009) and Ek Villain (2014). She made her television comeback after six long years with the show Kasautii Zindagii Kay (2019). She was last seen in the horror-comedy movie Roohi (2021). She will be making her digital debut with the psychological crime drama Damaged 3, wherein she would play the character of a cop. 

8. Mahhi Vij 

After kick-starting her career in modelling at the age of 17, she featured in various music videos like DJ Aqeel’s Tu Tu Hai Wahi (2007). She then appeared in a number of television shows like Akela (2006), Shubh Kadam (2009) and Laagi Tujhse Lagan (2009). She, along with her husband Jay Bhanushali, participated and won the 5th season of the dance reality show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa. In 2017, the couple adopted a boy and a girl. They welcomed their first biological child in 2019. She last made a guest appearance in the dating reality show Mujhse Shaadi Karoge (2020).  

9. Suneeta Rao 

She began her career with the song Suneeta Senorita (1989). In 1991, she released her album Dhuan, which sold over 75,000 copies. One of the songs from her iconic album, Paree Hoon Main, made her a household name. She released another album Talaash in 1999 and two of the songs from her album, Dehka Dehka and Kesariya, went on and became huge hits. In 2005, she acted in the play Sidd in New York. She is currently the spokesperson of an initiative called Laadli, which focuses on saving the girl child.  

10. Shweta Shetty 

She started her modelling and singing career at the age of 17. In 1993, she released her first album Johnny Joker. In 1998, she released another album Deewane To Deewane Hain. Both of these albums earned her great popularity. She then composed some popular songs like Bandhan’s Main Deewani Main Mastani (1998) and Bichhoo’s Tote Tote Ho Gaya (2000). After twenty long years, she made a comeback in the industry with the song Jalne Mein Hain Mazaa (2021).

11. Sophie Choudry 

She began her singing career at the age of 12. In 2004, she released her album Baby Love that made her popular across the entire nation. The album had some really popular songs like Ek Pardesi Mera Dil Le Gaya, Jadugar Saiyaan, Ghar Aaya Mera Pardesi and Bachke Rehna Re Baba. In 2014, she participated in the dance reality show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa S7.  

12. Deepal Shaw 

After starting her career as a model, she released her first album Baby Doll (2004), which consisted of modernised old songs, featuring a number of superhit remixes like Kabhi Aar Kabhi Paar and Rangeela Re. She also starred in several movies like Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster (2011) and Kalyug (2005). 

13. Viva!

Formed in 2002, this girl band consisted of the winners of Coke [V] Popstars. The five original members of the band were Seema Ramchandani, Pratichee Mohapatra, Neha Bhasin, Mahua Kamat and Anushka Manchanda. However, Seema Ramchandani left the group after releasing their first album, VIVA!, to join the Art of Living Foundation. They released their last album Viva! – Reloaded in 2003 and have embarked on their individual careers since then.

BRB, I’m going to re-watch all these pop songs all over again on loop!