It all started on the katta outside Podar college. Ten friends, one topic. No, it’s not your usual college chit chat. It’s women. The conversation turned into a heated discussion and led to a decision- We have to do something.
This was a personal issue for most of them. A sad truth of our day to day lives, is that even accompanied by male friends, a girl still feels insecure and scared when she detects a malicious look in the eyes of four men approaching her.
The objective here is creating awareness among students, for students with the help of other students. Volunteers were called, students from other colleges were approached, and slowly the group started becoming bigger. The seed of RISE was sown.
Now beginning anything is always tough. The problem is most members being articled clerks, coordinating meet timings was difficult. But where there is a will, there is an alarm clock, and it was set to 7am.
But as we all know, new organisations always face the problems of getting sponsorships. People do not take you seriously, and it can be quite a struggle, but this did not dampen their spirits. After many meetings and discussions, finally the response started coming in. More than 3500 people registered for their first campaign on the 16th December, 2013. It happened to be Nirbhaya’s anniversary.
The prep work started. T-shirts were distributed, posters were made and put up in areas like Sion, Matunga, Dadar, etc.
One of the most moving videos on the topic, I applaud the students for putting this up, do watch it- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcUyYXb2rTo&feature=youtu.be
The day began with flash mobs, nukkad-nataks and rallies. The mega event was held at Kirti Dungoorse college, Dadar where many notable personalities like Sadanand Date (joint commissioner of police), Flavia Agnes (social activist and lawyer), Rizwan Merchant (lawyer), Anand Potdat (Judge of the high court), Sharif bapu (ex karate team coach of India). Also present were Thanksey Thekkekara, the government official for women empowerment and Dr.Harish Shetty, a psychiatrist from Hiranandani hospital. The day ended with the song “Mujhe kya bechega rupaiyya” sung beautifully by Radhika Nanday.
This proves that not everyone sits back and criticizes the society and the authorities, there are some who get up and do something about it. The kind of leadership, determination and will shown by these individuals is extraordinary, and reminds us that in each one of us is the potential to make a difference, to bring about a change, and all we need to do is try.
Their next event is on 6th July, 2014 from 10am to 5pm at Raoli Camp Gurudwara, Near GTB Railway station, Sion Koliwada for a blood donation camp and this is your chance to make a difference. For more information you can check their Facebook page. Do your bit, join them.
Today I take the pledge. I will rise, will you?