In the movie Stree, what was Stree?

There is a reference to a story that claims that she was just a woman who was killed. And now her ghost haunts the town that killed her.

There are also references to her ponytail being the source of her powers indicating that she is a witch of sorts.

So is Stree a ghost or a witch?

2 Answers 2


The other answer described it nicely but if you go with the specific detail given in the film itself then she is pretty similar to a known south Asian folklore entity called Dayan:

The primary source of a Daayan's power is her long plaited hair or ("choti"), she is described as having long and monstrous black nails, and feet that face backward.

Matching with the film details. Long ponytail as a source of power and feet backward are also shown in films like Ek Thi Daayan and many other TV shows /films etc which portray Dayan.

The only issue was Dayan is the evil spirit by birth but Stree was vengeful spirit similar to Churel.

So I will say she is Dayan with the origin more similar to Churel then Dayan.

Also to be noted here film was inspired by Nale Ba popular folklore legend about a witch.

  • 1
    Can we say a "Dayan" is a ghost with powers in braid?
    – naive
    May 23, 2019 at 11:00
  • @naive Dayan are not ghosts but evil entity, more near term will be witch.
    – Ankit Sharma
    May 23, 2019 at 11:01
  • 1
    Is a Dayan a dead woman? Or a living woman with black magic and stuff?
    – naive
    May 23, 2019 at 11:03
  • @naive in general no but in film yes as I said in my answer
    – Ankit Sharma
    May 23, 2019 at 11:28
  • thanks for the links @AnkitSharma .. looks like the concept of Succubus (another variation of a witch) is also thrown into what Stree is because of the sexual element.
    – MovieMe
    May 23, 2019 at 12:35

Stree is a ghost with powers in braid.

From Wikipedia:

The plot is based on the Indian folk legend about a female spirit who attacks men at night if they are alone and only leaves their clothes behind. The residents of a town named Chanderi, Bhopal believe in the spirit of an angry woman, referred to as "Stree", who stalks men and whisks them away during the four days of a festival every year, causing many disappearances.

For the question:

There are also references to her ponytail being the source of her powers indicating that she is a witch of sorts.

Some noun meanings of witch:

1) a woman thought to have magic powers, especially evil ones, popularly depicted as wearing a black cloak and pointed hat and flying on a broomstick.

2) an ugly or unpleasant woman.

synonyms: hag, crone, harpy, harridan, termagant, she-devil;

So, we can say that Stree is a ghost with powers in braid.

  • 1
    isn't the power in the ponytail associated to a witch and not a ghost? Isn't that the popular mythical element?
    – MovieMe
    May 23, 2019 at 10:40
  • Yes true. But, that doesn't mean that a ghost cannot have powers in the braid.
    – naive
    May 23, 2019 at 10:43
  • I will not call her ghost as that's too general term and didn;t describe her exactly
    – Ankit Sharma
    May 23, 2019 at 10:51

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