And the Most Farcical Awards are…

Couple of days ago, I was browsing through the NDTV website when I came across something called the ‘GR8 Women’s Achievers  Awards’. These were new to me but apparently Kelvinator has given them for the last 2 years. I was browsing through the photos of the event to see who got the awards….some inspirational stories maybe?…stories of women who achieved something against all odds…who contributed positively to our society…?NO! But who do I end up seeing…Aishwarya Rai, Sushmita Sen, Bhagyashree (yup..the one from Maine Pyar Kiya), Diya Mirza (she’s every where these days), Yuktha Mookhey, Aarti Chabria, Zarine Khan etc in their beautiful sarees showing off their blouses and some in their skimpy clothes showing off their well-toned abs and yea..how can I forget….Shabana Azmi..she’s all things feminist isn’t she?

I was so disappointed…there was no one who I could admire, who actually contributed something to our society. Did Kelvinator conviniently ignore people like Dr. Sunitha Krishnan, the founder of Prajwala and many other women who are aplenty in our country? Do GR8 Women Achievers all have to be bollywood starlets? Dr Sunitha Krishnan, the founder of an NGO called Prajwala, who was gang raped at a young age fought back her horrors to become a psychiatrist and help children who are severely abused and sometimes sold and trafficked. Isn’t she inspirational to other women? Isn’t she deserving of this award?

What exactly have the bollywood startlets achieved may I ask? Most of them were models before they became actors or progeny of stars. They get paid crap load of money for their work…live in posh homes, drive extremely comfortable cars and dress in designer labels. For me, a GR8 Achiever is someone like Dr. Sunitha Krishnan…who is ACTUALLY doing something good for our society against all odds.

She is the only one I can think of now but this doesn’t mean there is no other woman in our country who is helping another. I am sure you will find one in every street corner. Such awards should carry some value…give it to people who really deserve them, to encourage them, to motivate them, to recognise their efforts and to show to the world what they do so that their organisations/NGO’s get the much-needed support. It doesn’t matter if you don’t give these awards to actors, they will still be fine…they won’t be missing out on anything. Who will it be next yr? Katrina, Kareena, Deepika etc?

Shame On You Kelvinator and the GR8 Women’s Achievers Awards panel!

A Woman Among Warlords

…..a Woman Among Warlords follows the campaign of a woman running in Afghanistan’s first democratic parliament election in more than 30 years. 27 year-old Malalai Joya, one of the country’s most famous (and controversial) women since 2003 challenged the power of warlords in national politics. Forced to live in hiding and surrounded by armed guards, Joya conducts her parliamentary campaign in the remote desert province of Farah, the heart of poverty in Afghanistan. Despite death threats and assassination attempts, Joya continues to meet with clan leaders, opium kings, and adolescent girls pressured to marry older men. Six years after a U.S.-led coalition overthrew the Taliban, WIDE ANGLE provides unique insight into the politics and culture of a nation almost ruined by war, still ruled by fear, but desperate for change. A Woman Among Warlords is the television version of the celebrated documentary Enemies of Happiness, a film by Danish director Eva Mulvad……

Pic Courtesy of http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/graphics

I watched this documentary on More4 couple of days ago and had been wanting to write about it. We came back after watching Mongol. It was 11 PM…our bedtime. I still had some last minute stuff to sort out when I switched on the tv. I put a reminder for this particular show and was glad I didn’t miss it. The documentary finished at 12.20 AM and both of us were wide awake and S usually dozes off by 10.

There were tears rolling down my eyes. We watched the documentary in awe of the woman, Malalai Joya. Often, we are not grateful for what we have and who we are and this documentary makes us realise just how blessed we are.

It’s true…when the going gets tough…only the tough get going and Malalai Joya is a fine example of this. She is all of 29 and dreams of a better future for her country. In a male-dominated society, she is fearless, strong and out-spoken. She is the voice of thousands of Afghani women who lead a life if desperation…in search of justice and hope. Inspite of innumerable death threats…she still fights for her and the rights of other Afghani women and children. 

I RECOMMEND EVERYONE TO WATCH THE DOCUMENTARY. NOT JUST WOMEN. IT’S AN INSPIRATIONAL STORY FOR ALL.