Ethnopharmacological relevance: The Menispermaceae plant Tiliacora racemosa is immensely popular in Indian traditional Ayurvedic medicine as “Krishnavetra” for its remarkable anti-cancerous property, and is commonly used by tribal population for the treatment of skin infections, snake bites and filariasis. Aim of the study: This present study intends to identify the modus operandi behind the cytotoxic activity of Tiliacora racemosa leaves in cervical cancer cells SiHa. Focus has been instilled in the ability of the plant extract to target multiple signaling pathways leading to cell cycle arrest and cell death in SiHa cells, followed by a pharmacological characterization to identify the bioactive principle. Materials and methods: T. racemosa leaves extracted in methanol, ethyl acetate, hexane and aqueous solvent were screened for cytotoxicity in HeLa, SiHa, C33A (cervical cancer cells) and HEK cells by MTT assay. SiHa cells were treated with the most potent extract (TRM). Cellular morphology, clonogenic and wound healing potential, presence of intracellular ROS and NO, lipid peroxidation, activity of cellular antioxidants (SOD, CAT, GSH), DNA damage detection by comet assay and localisation of γ-H2AX foci, intracellular expression of PARP-1, Bax/Bcl2 and caspase-3, loss in mitochondrial membrane potential by JC1 (flow cytometry) and Rh123 (microscopy), cell cycle analysis, Annexin-FITC assay, AO/EtBr microscopy and apoptotic proteome profiling were undertaken in the treated cells. All the related proteins were studied by immunoblots. Effect of NAC (ROS-scavenger) on cell viability, DNA damage and apoptosis were studied. Phytochemical characterization of all TR extracts was followed by LC-MS analysis of TRM and isolated alkaloid of TR was assessed for cytotoxicity. Results: The methanol extract of T. racemosa (TRM) rich in bisbenzylisoquinoline and other alkaloids impeded the proliferation of cervical cancer cells SiHa in vitro through disruption of cellular redox homeostasis caused by increase in cellular ROS and NO with concomitant decrease in the cellular antioxidants. Double-stranded DNA damage was noted from γH2AX foci accumulation and Parp-1 activation leading to ATM-Chk2-p53 pathway arresting the cells at G2/M-phase through cyclin B1 inhibition. The mitochondrial membrane potential was also disturbed leading to caspase-3 dependent apoptotic induction by both extrinsic and intrinsic pathway. Immunoblots show TRM also inhibited PI3K/Akt and NFκB pathway. NAC pre-treatment rescued the cell viability proving DNA damage and apoptosis to be direct consequences of ROS overproduction. Lastly, the therapeutic potential of T. racemosa is was hypothesized to be possibly derived from its alkaloid content. Conclusion: This study proves the age old ethnnopharmacological anticancer role of T. racemosa. The leaf extracts inhibited the anomalous proliferation of SiHa cells by virtue of G2/M-phase cell cycle arrest and apoptotic cell death. Oxidative stress mediated double stranded DNA damage paved the way towards apoptotic cell death through multiple routes, including PI3K/Akt/NFκB pathway. The abundant alkaloid content of T. racemosa was denoted as the probable responsible cytotoxic principle. © 2020 Elsevier B.V.