Reform Vs Conservatism

(By Yamika Khanna, Non-fiction Editor, Paprikashta)

Her husband said ‘TALAQ’ twice, she suspects that is not true. Three is the number that serves the link. Twice gives her an opening to claim that the marriage is technically on. But just one word away, another talaq from his mouth would destroy her life and break her hope of reuniting with him and saving her family. TRIPLE TALAQ a threat as well as menace to all Muslim women is the topic which the society needs to think about and pay attention towards.
As the case of Saira Banu , a woman suffering because of the malpractice of Triple Talaq appeals before the Supreme Court for justice and ban on such life destructive practices making women more prone to crimes, harassments , domestic violence and various forms of injustice , making them accept the torture or the violence done by their husband or their in-laws because they are constantly facing the risk of getting divorced verbally and without going through a fair trial done by the legal system of the country a fresh set of questions and debate gets opened up which needs the attention of all right thinking citizens , legislatures , executives and most importantly the free judiciary of the world’s largest democracy . We need to make it clear that it is no more a male dominant world and such injustice and ill-treatment would not be accepted any more by the society and the country. The time has come to change the thinking of the patriarchs and the ambassadors of such practices or rather malpractices.
According to constitution of the country divorced women are entitled to monthly maintenance by their husband’s to sustain a living and lead a dignified life, But in case of triple talaq the women is only entitled to some amount of money decided during the time of their marriage . The value of money and the rupee changes almost every day , just imagine that if you got married around ten years ago ;is the value of money set during that time enough to sustain a living in this era , isn’t there any increase in the cost of various day to day needs ? We continually talk about the hike in price and value so can we actually conclude that the amount set a long time ago is enough to at least fulfil the basic day to day requirements of a woman? These struggles of the women make their lives miserable and make them financially dependant on their relatives for help or should I say their mercy, this causes poverty which further leads to depression, social, cultural and ethnic exclusion. Moreover there are cases when the husband declares talaq over the phone or through emails and the wife is expected to accept his decision and to not knock the doors of a court for legal assistance and aid.
This practice leads to a constant threat as they have no access to any kind of life or relation security and can be abandoned on even the slightest mistake , disobedience or while taking a stand for themselves. This is the reason for why the numerous dowry cases, marital rapes, domestic violence and crimes against the women go unreported; this is the hurdle we need to cross to fulfil the aim of women development and empowerment. If god says that to register a marriage or for the beginning of a marriage the consent of both bride and groom is necessary, then why not for divorce? If Quobool Hai is said by both of them to start a marriage then why not Talaq to end one? In addition what is the fault of a child who is suffering due to the malpractice? What about his/ her future, education but most importantly doesn’t he / she deserves the love and care of his/ her father? There are many such cases when after the divorce the man remarries and abandon the child from his earlier marriage, where he doesn’t provide the maintenance even for the child. He is busy nurturing his family , second wife and the children from her that he can no longer see the requirements of his abandoned child . He is trying to establish and settle down with his new family at the cost of the earlier one.
Some patriarchs also believe that there is even a method by which a woman can seek instant divorce in Islam. The KHULLA rightly named as that method which is used as an excuse for the existence of TRIPLE TALAQ. But is this method actually effective enough? To seek a KHULLA a Muslim woman may petition a qadi, or Islamic community panel, to grant her divorce if the husband refuses. Firstly if we compare KHULLA with TRIPLE TALAQ the method used here to seek divorce is not verbal or can’t be fulfilled by sending a letter or an email, it is a method requiring full paper work and going through a set process. Secondly the woman needs appeals in front of a religious panel if the husband refuses to provide her with the divorce. Here in this process the male dominance is established but no female representation is there in case of triple talaq.
TRIPLE TALAQ is not a fight against a particular religious or cultural group or section of the society but rather it is a fight against all those patriarchs, conservatives and dominant people who support this idea, it is a fight against the ill practices going on the name of religion, against injustice and inequality. I would like all the supporters and patriarch people to think their reactions and feeling if this happened with their own daughters, sisters or mothers. How would they think of their fathers if they did this to their mother’s, wouldn’t you get shattered by this idea? Your wives are also the daughter’s, sister’s and mothers of someone. Just imagine the hatred or the anger your child would have for you, could he/she ever forgive you for the pain that he/she and his/her mother faced.
More than twenty Muslim majority countries including Pakistan have scrapped this system. But in India it is still a topic for debate. We call ourselves developing country, but development does not only mean having better infrastructure, or being able to compete in the global world, it’s not only about having better research centres or developing smart cities. But rather the basic fundaments of development are equality, justice and representation of everyone. If we are not able to attain such basic requirements of development I don’t think that materialistic development can define the progress of a country because the progress of a country means the progress of its citizens and progress in their mind-set’s . No longer can the government and judiciary escape from taking any decision by saying it a religious matter or practice they need to take a solid action and demolish this system of malpractice because law is same for all and equality and justice a demand that now no longer can be supressed. This demand will grow stronger day by day till the system as well as patriarchs kneel on their knees and introduce reforms both religiously and legaly.

Sin and Redemption

(By Kushagra Singh, Non-fiction Editor, Paprikashta)

It is a rare occurrence now for the buildup for a sports game to be merely about the teams. The buildup is just as much about a myriad of subplots regarding individuals; teammates, opponents and even the coaches. Acclaimed cricket broadcaster and journalist Harsha Bhogle writes “Eventually, all sport is about emotions of winning and losing, of joys and disappointments, about the aspirations that are dashed” and correctly so. For the lasting image of the 2006 FIFA World Cup Final would forever be that of a dejected Zinedine Zidane walking past the Trophy after being sent off for head-butting Marco Materazzi. Or the 2011 ICC World Cup, which was a tale of redemption for Sachin Tendulkar in setting right the wrong of the 1996 World Cup semi-final in Kolkata, or perhaps an even more recent case in point being that of a crestfallen Lionel Messi, in tears after losing his third successive international final in three years, in what would go on to be his last international game. All of these individuals were subjected to immense scrutiny in their time in the public eye, but along with that scrutiny there did also lie an element of understanding, and even the staunchest of critics, at no point questioned their motives.

In the recently concluded England-Pakistan test match at Lord’s, the one man whom the limelight definitely was on was Pakistani fast-bowler Mohammad Amir. Amir’s case is similar to the abovementioned ones in a few ways, and quite different in others. It is a story nearly 6 years in the making, with an almost Dostoevskian tale of Sin and Redemption.

 

sinandredemption

image source

The Backdrop

Mohammad Amir, a left arm fast bowler had, in his early years tried to emulate his idol, Pakistani fast bowling legend Wasim Akram, who would be the one to pluck him from obscurity soon after his first class debut in 2007. He burst onto the scene in the 2009 T20 World Cup, where he was a part of the playing XI in all games and was an integral component of their title-winning team. He was able to impress critics and spectators alike with his incisive speed and his eye for a bouncer. Comparisons to Wasim Akram were premature, albeit not completely inaccurate. Over the course of the next 12 months, Amir would go on to establish himself as one of the most exciting and promising prospects in world cricket.

 

The Sin

In the summer of 2010, Pakistan toured England for a series of 4 Tests, 2 T20I’s and 5 ODI’s. Amir continued his good form into the series, and was, in the third Test match awarded the Man of the Match award for taking a five wicket haul, becoming the youngest to do so on English soil. He took 19 wickets, the highest in the Pakistan side and third highest in the series overall. For a player who’d had a rise as mercurial as Amir, that wasn’t as surprising as it seemed. However, a sting operation from News of the World turned everything on its head. In the sting operation, reporters had established contact with a particular Mazhar Majeed, who had been suspected of betting. In the video, Majeed went on record saying that Amir would be bowling the third over in the last match at Lord’s, and the opening delivery of that over shall be a no-ball. The third over was indeed bowled by Amir, and the first delivery of that over happened to be a no-ball. Commentary described the delivery as an “enormous no-ball, good half a meter over the line”. Amir, along with teammates Mohammad Asif and Salman Butt faced an ICC Anti-Corruption Unit tribunal and were found guilty and were subsequently banned. Amir was given a 5 year ban, and Asif and Butt received 7 and 10 year bans respectively, effectively ending their international careers. A comeback wasn’t impossible for Amir, but the greater consensus emerged that Amir’s career would forever be recalled as a case of ‘What could have been’.

The Aftermath

Amir pleaded guilty to the charges and publicly asked for forgiveness. He was criminally convicted in court on the charges of conspiracy to cheat at gambling and conspiracy to accept corrupt payments and was sentenced to 6 months in a young offender’s institute. Amir appealed, albeit unsuccessfully against the length of the sentence. He was later transferred to another similar institute in Dorset, from which he was released in February 2012 after completing half of his sentence.

Reactions to the whole fiasco ranged from disappointed to sympathetic. Former England captain Michael Atherton stated that Amir is an asset to the game and must not be given a harsh punishment, considering his immense talent and young age. Another former England captain, Nasser Hussain, echoed Atherton’s views, saying ‘Please don’t let it be the kid’.

Atherton added, in his article: “The ‘kid’ in question was Mohammad Amir, the young, good-looking and prodigiously-talented Pakistan bowler who had blown England away on the second morning at Lord’s with a mesmeric spell of left-arm bowling and who now, we had been told, had overstepped the front line twice for a few dollars more.”  Some former players around the world such as Michael Vaughan, Ian Healy and Andrew Flintoff called for Amir to be banned for life.

Harsha Bhogle stated, in his article for ESPNCricinfo:

“It is our choices that tell us who we are.

But these choices can be influenced; sometimes, and I hope never, young players can be coerced into walking down a specific path. And so it comes down to the air they breathe when their minds are still fragile. It could be the air of excellence that drives a young man to newer heights of achievement. Or it could be the putrid air of greed that could infect him and snuff a career out before it has had time to blossom………Amir is not just a young cricketer but a young man symbolizing tomorrow in Pakistan and that is why cricket lovers there should be disappointed”.

The (Road to) Redemption

Amir made it no secret that he was desperate to return to international cricket. He stated that he had maintained his fitness levels, and participated in club cricket. A long, arduous wait ensued and eventually on August 19 2015, Amir was cleared to play in all forms of cricket from September 2 2015. It was up to Amir now to seize the opportunity and prove his mettle to regain his spot in the national side, as well as achieve repentance for his acts. He seized the opportunity with a vengeance, displaying the same incisiveness and accuracy he earlier had and soon earned a recall to the national side for T20I’s against New Zealand in January 2016. However, all was not yet set right; his return to the national team was not easy with some of his teammates refusing to net with him initially. The crowds in New Zealand gave him a hard time as well, with cash register sounds seemingly played as a taunt towards Amir.

However, Amir was undeterred. It had taken him immense mental and physical strength to get into the team again and it was going to take much more than a few taunts to break him. The Mohammad Amir that emerged post-return was similar yet different to that before those no-balls. He possessed the same lethal qualities which led to his mercurial rise, yet had a much tougher mental resolve. The greed to make a quick buck wouldn’t get the better of this Mohammad Amir, seemingly nothing would. He was one of the shining lights in what was otherwise an abysmal campaign for Pakistan in the 2016 T20 World Cup in India. His spell to Virat Kohli was one of the most talked about aspects on social media, and Indian supporters were ready to appreciate the quality of the sheer brilliance in fast bowling that was Mohammad Amir.

To a few, however, Amir’s true redemption came in the recently concluded Test match at Lord’s. It was the same venue where Amir had last played a Test match, and nearly 6 years to the date of that match Amir was back there, to quite a mixed response. Kevin Pietersen, who was a part of the England side in that 2010 Test match, wrote in his article for The Telegraph “Any sportsman or woman caught match fixing, spot fixing or taking drugs should be banned for life. They have broken the rules, should pay the price and not be given a second chance. If you cheat the system either by taking drugs or money to under-perform then you are mugging the spectators, your team-mates and a sport that has been around a lot longer than you.” In his own right, Pietersen does raise a valid point, for the whole fiasco was one of the lowest points in cricketing relations between England and Pakistan. However, as the way things were, Mohammad Amir was a part of the Pakistan side and would get his chance at redemption, and indeed he did. Pakistan scripted a famous victory, winning by 75 runs and exorcising the demons of the defeat some six years ago.

In some people’s eyes, Amir has achieved his redemption, in others’, he is yet to, and in the eyes of a certain few he perhaps never can. Subjectively, different people have different views on Amir and his return.

Objectively speaking, however, Amir’s return is of great gain to the cricketing world, which had seemingly lost one of its most promising talents to the demon of greed, and Amir has emerged from the scandal a matured, mentally stronger individual. In doing so, Amir has been lucky enough to receive a second chance, something Zidane never did after what happened in 2006, or Vinod Kambli never did after the 1996 semi- final. Amir could have let his career collapse, but instead he resurrected it with the perfect blend of hard work, resilience and strength of character.

 

 

 

 

I am not defined by my religion or race

(Written by Saumya Rastogi)

Nobody is defined by their religion or race. Our political identity has nothing to do with our individual characteristics.
There is more to us than just our race, caste, gender or place of birth. Even the religion that we follow does not determine our way of living. It however, restricts our thinking and behaviour. Accordingly, we adjudge our environment and surroundings, and move forward. But, instead of moving ahead, some people are still stuck in a stagnant pool of swampy water with no intention of ever getting out. They feel that their religion alone is supreme and this superiority leads them into believing that there exists only one God, that is their’s. They feel that only they belong to this world and whoever is different is therefore, immoral or uncultured. Thus, we think that this separation and divisions in our minds occurs due to this so called factionalism and communalism.

But, religion is not the root of all problems rather it is one of the vices to control human behaviour and nurture positive thinking. We all have one religion, to protect others and that of humanity. This religion is that of spiritual being and living in harmony. This togetherness can only be felt if we are truly secular. Blaming one’s belief to cause communal riots or terrorism is a huge mistake, since a belief is never wrong rather one’s way of understanding it is.
No religion can ever instruct it’s followers to kill others to gratify their needs. No such rules are there in these scripts to urge every person to follow only a particular religion.
Boundaries, lines and barriers around states and countries are defined as territories. It all begun when nobles and kings started conquering kingdoms by battles. Was this not a form of terrorism?
Was this not creating fear by establishing dictators?
Afterall, how can you say terrorism is wrong when the governments itself formed such people by pressurising them. It is now that they have to face the consequences.
Although it is all a matter of perspective. However controversial this topic is, it affects millions of lives and how they perceive it.
There are so many different beliefs and ideas that it is impossible to say that one is right and another one is wrong.
Have you ever stepped in the shoes of a suicide bomber? What pressurised them in doing this. Money? Faith? Society?
However, it all starts with a mindset, even a single one which wants to create fear; fear in the minds of ordinary citizens.
Human beings are like animals. They fight for territory, trying to seize it and conquer.
I am not saying such acts are justified, violence is never justifiable.
Peace is the only answer to these problems since, war propagates war. Oppression and attack on these groups will only lead to more destruction. Such acts will only reduce peace and cause a negative impact on the innocent lives of children brainwashed into believing the misinterpreted texts of the holy books.
Need of the hour is Solidarity, Equality, Love and Gratitude. For how we should live is by abiding these morals. But then again we are a higher order of animals. Although animals also know when it is more than enough.
We kill for no reason and for all reasons at the same time.
And this is one of the billion perspectives in these abundant cosmos.

Falling in Love with my Fear of the Dark

(By Drishtti Rawat, Founder and Editor-In-Chief, Paprikashta)

Fear, at its very basic level- is an emotion. And well, humans experience emotions, though I wouldn’t say that all human beings experience all emotions. However, for something such as fear- which derives itself from the possibility of threat, it is hard to say that a said human being has never experienced it. For we live in no utopia- there is always a threat- or is so assumed. Even a fearless person might fear the possibility of fear itself.

Threat. As fear derives itself from threat- so does threat derive itself from either the known, or more often, the unknown. Now, I don’t prefer to use the word ‘unknown’- I’d rather connect it with something we consider every day, that is- possibility. Almost every fear can be derived from possibilities. For example, the possibility(or inevitability) of death which, I consider more as the fear of losing out on future possibilities that could have been explored if it weren’t for the end.  Or say, the fear of heights being more about the possibility of falling down and getting hurt.

Or, the fear of the dark being about the fear of what possibly lies within it.

As a very small kid, I was initially quite scared of the dark. I remember resisting to my full extent, to enter a ‘haunted house’ or a ghost-themed amusement park. This certainly did not amuse me, which led me to think differently- and led me to have the perception of the dark that I hold today. Resulting in such a perception were quite some realisations- as graciously this head of mine can remember. I can’t remember my exact age when all so happened- but funnily enough I remember talking to myself with the same voice inside of me that I have today. (maybe because we never truly grow up eh?)

Realisation I- I see you

I began to think about what does actually make us so scared of the unknown, which for me then was the  dark. And with no surprise, it is- uncertainty, and as I said earlier- possibility. For we are not certain of what might be or what might come- our crazy mind of assumptions and imaginations does create a false sense of certainty of what might be  or what might come. This unfortunately, is usually the worst-case scenario. While trying to go to sleep in the dark, my mind would act silly “Oh my God, what is that shadow? Its obviously not the chair but a demon instead.” “Oh dear Lord, what just moved there? Obviously not the curtains, its a ghost.”

We are humans. We think silly. We act silly. Especially if you’re a 7 to 12 year old kid (again as I said, I don’t remember the age).

What did I do next? I did what I thought was the obvious solution, hide under the blanket and create more of what you were already scared of- darkness. Ingenious. And with more of darkness (I honestly don’t know what ‘more dark’ means though- so lets just talk in quantity and not intensity)-came more of possibilities, imagination and worst-case scenarios.

Now normally a solution for this is to turn on the lights, see what’s actually there and then poof- you’re no longer scared. (for that moment-or maybe not). However, turning on the lights each time is not  very feasible- nor is it very easy to go across the room and switch on the lights when you have a lava of fear between your bed and the switchboard. So one night, for some reason, I decided to act a little brave. Instead of looking away and hiding under the blanket- I stared back into the dark. I stared until I could see what was the truth. Stared until the ghost became a curtain. Stared until the demon became a chair. Stared until I was no longer afraid. And it actually works- according to science, our eyes adapt to the darkness. Now this is quite a no-brainer. But, this was also when I started looking at this method metaphorically.

Realisation II- Seeing in the dark, metaphorically

I had established the fact that if I look long enough, I can in fact see that there is nothing to be scared of. So my mind then switched to metaphors.

If you look long enough, you can see in the dark.

If you fight hard enough, you can eliminate fear.

If you search hard enough, you will eventually find what you were looking for.

So apparently, little Drishtti had formed an ideology- if you stay put, you can fight off anything. And that’s some encouragement for a kid, honestly- I know how it affected me. But, eventually you realise that that isn’t always the case.

Not everything can be won over just by fighting. Not every problem can be solved just by looking it back in the eye with all your might. As different from the norm does this sound, it actually stands true. “Try and try till you succeed” does not work until you try smartly. This meant that there is a need for change. If plan A doesn’t succeed, you need to change your methodology. You must do something about it. You. 

This was one massive thought that struck me really hard. It is you who decides what the situation is. It is you who decides what the situation can be. And in the case of little Drishtti, it is you who decides what is in the dark.

And if it is you who decides, then the unknown-threat factor gets eliminated. Ah, and then things took an amazing turn.

Realisation III- Creativity and Falling in love with the dark

After realising that I was in control, I started to enjoy this power and continued to use it. Its intensity began to increase, I’d rather call it a ‘creativity-spurt’. There have been endless nights when the same curtains that terrified me were not curtains at all. Curtains turned into portals to other dimensions, doors changed into waffles, chairs changed into TNT boxes (behind which I was obviously hiding from the gangsters who wanted me dead). I won’t say I never imagined ghosts or demons- but it was no longer the worst-case scenario, it was rather something that filled me with excitement.That was also the time when I started having such amazing dreams. Now I also maintain a mental dream-bucket. And yes, I sometimes have to wake up and write down my dreams.

Not only had I stopped fearing the dark, but I had begun to fall in love with it.

People who know me know that I absolutely love night-time. The silence and the calm, give your mind such clarity to think deeper and expand your horizons. You begin to see how beautiful even the darkness can be. You begin to see how beautiful even nothing can be. You begin to see how your mind can make just about anything beautiful.

Within no time I became an insomniac-writer. A thinker. And oh, how much do I love to think.

I can definitely say that my fear of the dark did, in someway- make me a thinker. I fell in love with my fear of the dark.

(also posted on drishtti ki drishtti se)

(image source)

Carpe Diem

 

cd(By Apurva Lodha, Non-fiction Editor)

Nowadays all of us have become so focused on the future and what comes next and on the past reminiscing about what we did, and what we should have done, that we’ve started to forget how to live. We don’t get to live our lives twice. So perhaps it’s time we remembered that, and started seizing the day with confidence and doing what we’ve always wanted to do.

Now is the only time which really matters. Teenagers, as a general rule, are always under a lot of pressure from our parents, our teachers and even our friends to start deciding what we want to do in life and to fulfil the tremendous number of responsibilities we have. But for now, we have to learn that it’s okay to make mistakes, to act out, to do what we feel is right, and to go with our instincts because this is the time when above all, we need to live in the moment. We need to go out there and make mistakes because that is the only way that we will ever learn, and the only way we will ever be able to survive in the real world. After all, this is the point of our teen years, our school years, isn’t it? To learn?

When we’re having fun doing something, the first thing we remember to do is to take a photo and either snapchat it or post it on Facebook or instagram. We do this to ‘preserve the memories’. What we don’t realise is that if we were actually concentrating on what was going on, we might have had an even better experience, and we might not have to rely on pictures to remember something that we really should never have forgotten in the first place.

For most of human history, humans had a life span of only about 30 years or so, and thus they did not have any time or the need to plan for college, their future, how to get a job, etc. And now life has become the future. Every moment of your life is used to prepare for the future–you go to school and study hard so that you can get into a good college so that you can get a high paying job so that you can get a nice house so you that can afford to send your kids to college so that they can get a good job so that they can get a nice house so that they can afford to send their kids to college.

One of my favourite books is Paper Towns by John Green and he talks about this quite a bit, about how everyone has become paper people living in paper towns which were never built to last, just working towards the future not realizing how it affects specific individuals of the society. How some people can’t take the pressure, the sheer superficiality of school and life. How some people are forced to take their own lives because always living for the future is not for them, but no one lets them live in the now.

We need to start changing our perceptions about life and learn that while planning for the future has its place in the scheme of things, we need to keep our focus on the present.  None of us can predict the future, or change the past, but today is something that we can definitely influence by living in the moment. So, Seize the Day!

Carpe Diem!

 (image source)

If You Were a Woman

Written by Aayushi Khanna (Non-fiction Editor)

Photograph by Ridhima Bhatia (Photography Editor)

 

Even the pettiest stereotypes like, men get ready in the time a maggi is cooked and women take hours to, makes me so frustrated. Feminism, women empowerment, equality or just being a woman is one topic nobody can write enough on, and it can never be satisfying or correct. Every line creates such a dilemma.
Though it annoys me how it’s said that girls take longer to get ready I can’t help but try and abolish these stereotypes with logic. We have more hair to play with, more products to cake our face with, also, just about much more of everything else.

I plan on being an independent woman who pays for her own food, clothes, house and… well, more food. Nothing would make me prouder (Not that I don’t like being pampered). I won’t emphasize on this too much, I AM aware of the amount of girls that love being pampered and wouldn’t mind it going on. *sigh* Bliss, right?

I would like to be able to walk out in a pair of shorts or just anything other than my jeans, I’ve started to despise my favourite pair of jeans, I can’t look at it without cringing and thinking of the ten minutes that I put in everyday trying to get them past my knees, sweating it out, giving up, starting over, succeeding, going out only to be found squirming to the feeling of the denim sticking to my legs like a leech in the heat of this city, coming home disappointed because not even a full pair of jeans can protect me from the dirty looks of the labour working on the house below my apartment.

If you’re pretty you can’t be smart, if you’re ugly, well… you’re just ugly. It takes me a while to comprehend how anyone can call anyone ugly, and why is it that men can get away with looking like a reptilian mole rat? But come on, before you call someone ugly look really, REALLY hard at that person if you don’t find something beautiful about them, you need to put on your glasses and look again. My mum always told me “It’s good to be a beauty, but be a beauty with brains!” and I always wondered, why she never told my brother the same thing, I mean am I the only beautiful one? (hehe)

I can’t help but notice how I love being a girl because of the more of everything that I get to do with my face and clothes, but I’d sometimes like to step out without even a touch of face powder or eye make-up and not be told that I was looking sick or tired or like I had been crying because it’s just my face that looks that way, apparently. Sometimes, I want to step out looking hideous, sometimes I want to be picked to lift the heaviest table or carry my teacher’s books through the corridor because my strength is no lesser than a guy’s, sometimes I want to see a guy reading a Meg Cabot book or listening to a Katy Perry song, I want to see sixth graders to not be afraid to get the ‘cooties’, moreover, someday, I want to work in a company and be paid and treated as equally as my colleague, maybe even more than him. I never want to walk through an alley wishing I was a boy instead, from this day on I’m a woman and I am stronger than you. What about you?

 

 

(also posted on thedistorteddiamond)

The Forgotten Liberator of India

Written by Yamika Khanna (Non-Fiction Editor)

Indian history is replete with legends, facts, and stories about India. In fact every single person has its own story to unfold and open for interpretation. Many are verifiable but there is a vast body of legends that make up the tapestry ‘Incredible India’. Today I would like to talk about SAVITRIBAI PHULE ‘The forgotten liberator’. She was the first women educationist, poetess and foremost emancipator of women of India. She was the aspiration and hope of various sections of society for change, equality and dignity.

Savitribai was horrified by the situation of women of her time and decided to open the first girl’s school of India in Pune to educate women leading to them become independent and self-reliant. Moreover skill development also took place to make them able to earn their livelihood and prove themselves in various fields of life. She took drastic measures to improve the lives of widows in India who were then ill-treated and were most prone to women related crimes by other male members of the family making them insecure and making their situation pitiable. Their heads were shorn to make them look unattractive. They were also confined to some remote part of the house. Savitribai with the support of her husband and reformer Jyotirao Phule went on strike against barbers to persuade them to stop shaving the heads of widows; she also established a rehabilitation centre for children born of harassed women.

Her presence was indeed a great support system for women. Her only motive in life was to secure equality, freedom, independence, dignity and equal rights for women. SAVITRIBAI PHULE was the bright star that lit up the darkness of ignorance, illiteracy and conservatism of her time.

Image source