अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला दिवस ८ मार्च को विश्व भर में मनाया जाता है। इस अवसर पर D N A की पहल यहाँ आपकी जानकारी के लिए प्रस्तुत है। आपकी पहल हमारी हिम्मत और ताक़त को और ज्यादा बढायेगी।
Vibha Rani: Why don’t you be a part of our theatre workshop? Do you have stage fright? Prisoner: Fright? I killed my husband and I have no regrets and you talk about being afraid of reciting lines।
Vibha Rani, no novice at handling situations like these, gives the inmate’s shoulder a gentle squeeze and moves on. In 2002, on the eve of International Women’s Day, when Rani walked into Byculla jail’s women’s cell for the first time, she was terrified. But six years and over 40 art and theatre workshops later, most barracks in city jails have become familiar to her. “I don’t look at it as social service anymore. I eagerly await weekends, so that I can arrange such workshops more often,” she says.
Rani works as a manager with Indian Oil, and admits that helping out jail inmates was not something she had planned on doing. But working for women has always been on her agenda. “I come from Madhubani, a small town in Bihar. Girls were never sent to school there,” says Rani. She remembers tagging along with her mother when she was eight, knocking on doors and trying to convince parents to send their girl child to school. “My mother was a teacher and was determined to increase the attendance of girls,” she says. When Rani moved to Mumbai a few years ago she thought she too would make a difference somewhere — just like her mother – and started her NGO, Avitoko.
“Most people who come to see us ask God for forgiveness on our behalf. But a lot of us in here do not even regret what we have done,” says Malti, a Kalyan jail inmate in a letter to Rani. “Avitoko was different,” she continues. “Well-known artists and poets spent time with us, but never asked us what our crime is. They just told us we have immense potential.”
Vijay Bendre, jail superintendent at Yerwada jail believes that Rani’s work at his jail has altered lives. “A term in jail is enough to break a person. With Avitoko, the inmates have a good time — they write their own plays and direct them too. It rebuilds their confidence and prepares them to face life,” he says.