Woman in India

TRIGGER WARNING: This article talks explicitly about rape.

 

India is home to me. Whilst being there I remember every time I went out my mom would tell me to be careful and be alert. Be ready to scream if anything happened and be ready to run. It sounds outrageous to have to tell your daughter something like that when she was only 13 and it’s crazy to feel like you have to protect yourself in your home. Thus begins the question, what makes India so dangerous?

16th December 2012, Jyoti Singh and her male friend Awindra Pratap Pandey take the bus home from a night at the movies watching the life of Pi in South Delhi. Jyoti was your average girl. She had dreams and aspirations, she had a family who loved her and she had things to live for. There were 6 other men on the bus Jyoti and her friend was on and once the bus deviated from its regular route they both became suspicious. One of the first things the men said to the two were “why are you both out so late alone together?” Almost insinuating that a man and woman can’t be friends and enjoy a night watching a movie. Awindra and the men began arguing and during that period, someone had gagged him, beaten him and eventually knocked him unconscious leaving Jyoti and her 6 attackers alone. She was brutally beaten and raped whilst the driver continued on the path. Medical reports state she was even raped with a rusted ‘L’ shaped rod and had suffered major injuries to her abdomen, intestines and genitals as a result. Later, the two were thrown out of the vehicle like animals and left to die on the side of the road. They were noticed by a passerby 2 hours later who called the police. They were both given emergency treatment. Jyoti was found with bite marks all over her body and numerous injuries. In fact, one of the men admitted seeing a rope-like object suspected to be her intestines being pulled out of Jyoti’s body. This is the horrifying story of a normal Dehli girl, one who dreamed of becoming a teacher, being raped and murdered for being friends and hanging out with the opposite sex.

 

Nirbhaya, meaning fearless, is what she was named. Nirbhaya as in when her attackers were found, they were found with bite marks on them as she tried fighting back. Fearless like the movement that was begun in India against the patriarchy, against the men who decide that it’s okay to patronize women for their right be free and most of all against anyone who thought this rape or any other was okay especially in India. There is a documentary made by the BBC called ‘India’s daughter’ in which Jyoti’s attackers are interviewed from jail. They state that they don’t regret doing what they did as women shouldn’t be allowed to walk freely at night and especially women should not be allowed to walk freely at night with a man who isn’t her husband, brother to father. They say that she ‘deserved it.’ When the documentary came out it was banned in India. Banned for conspiracy to defame India. Banned for telling the truth about an incident that occurred in India.

 

This isn’t saying that India isn’t beautiful and that one shouldn’t visit there. In fact, everyone should visit India at least once in their life for their rich culture, food and traditions. But one should also keep in mind the way the government attempts to silence victims, take away their truth and bury it deep underground. It is outdated, traditional mindsets that got Jyoti murdered and it is the same mindsets that prove to be the greatest danger in India today. Uneducated people who believe that women should not be allowed to roam and do as she pleases is a danger, men who believe that women deserve rape if they are seen late at night are a danger and anyone who thinks otherwise are dangers. They are dangers to society and dangers to future generations of women who will grow up hearing the same things I did from my mom every time I went out and be scared. Scared to explore their beautiful country and scared of every stranger they see. This isn’t the only case, however. Women are raped for revenge, for religion or for wearing something too revealing and it happens all around the world but particularly in India.

 

Nirbhaya will live on to be a movement based on fearlessness and Jyoti will continue to be the face of this movement. She did not deserve what happened to her and nor do any other women who are raped or sexually assaulted. Women in India today are aware, angry, and ready for action. This will not go down as just another incident in India but a warning for any future such incidents, we are ready for whatever happens because we are निर्भया.  (Nirbhaya)

 

 

 

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Nostalgia

The date is the 7th of November 2018 and it has been 3 days since the end of October break. Today is also Diwali and I can’t help but feel nostalgic and a longing for home. I miss the festivities and the sparklers, the mitai (Indian sweets) and biryani (food dish) but mostly I miss my friends and family. I see on everyone’s Instagrams, rangolis and traditional outfits and my heart longs to be there with them, laughing and dancing. We, the subcontinent national group, decided to do a mini-bonding tonight where we watched a Bollywood movie, ate some mitai and had some Indian snacks. Honestly, I just can’t wait to go home after a month and bask in the sunlight, eat some good food and hang out with my family and friends back home!

On a nicer note, I am going to London on Saturday and eating some Thai food and drinking some bubble tea. Literally can’t wait!

Thank you and hopefully I’ll write again soon ❤

It’s been 2 months…

I thought that before getting here, because of school and how it usually is, time would go by as slow as it usually does but being in AC has proved that time moves way to fast. I’m now sitting on my bed, it’s the 2nd of November and its half term break. It’s literally been half a term and only 3 halves until I’m a second year. SO I’ll start at the beginning when I first arrived. I was greeted with banging pots and pans and hugs from people in my house which is Gwynedd. There are 8 houses, and I was lucky enough to get the best one 🙂 On my bed were many notes from my second years from my national group and letters from different people in the house who hold positions like peer listener, student council, peace council etc. For the next week, we had math placement tests, English placement tests, subject fairs, activity fairs and many more. I was literally exhausted from all the meetings and decisions I had to make. In the end, however, it was all worth it because we had the first-year camp! I had to be late due to having to register with the police, but it was okay because I still did most of the activities. We had an 8-hour treck which basically murdered me as well as gardening, ice-breakers, dancing and more! There were also 5 songs that played on repeat including the dancing queen, riptide, dancing in the moonlight, shotgun and one more which I don’t remember because it was so long ago. School started on  Monday right after and honestly I loved all of my classes except one which I switched out of so its okay. Since then, I’ve had a few assessments already and just overall a lot of fun 🙂 We had percentage ball which is basically a survey to find out how many people in school are LGBTQ+ and celebrate them, this year it was 30%. We also had many trips to Bristol and Cardiff. My favourite part of everything though is the small things like movie nights, open houses (where we cook and eat with our house parent) and even just exploring the castle. What can I say, this place is remarkable but I also really miss home, so I guess it’s good that the rest of the term is only 5 more weeks.

Will update when some other things happen!

PS. Apply! Apply! Apply! The GCC applications for UWC are now open for 2019 and trust me you won’t regret coming here and studying in a castle!

Summer days

The date is June 9 and I’ve been on summer break for 8 days now. I can honestly say that I feel kind of hollow. Without purpose, you could say. I really miss school and all of my friends and knowing that next semester I won’t be seeing them again really puts a knife through everything. I love organizing and planning but with literally no agenda for the day, there’s nothing to plan. The worst part is that I have to start studying for my SAT’s and even math and Arabic for next year but I just feel so lazy 😦 The summer days are long and tedious and it’s really hitting me now that the cycle of eat sleep and repeat will continue for the next 2 months, 18 days (Yes I counted :p) until I’m at AC! Bye for now! 

(Here’s hoping that blogging can fill my days)

Introductions

Hi. My names Iman and well this is my blog. I started this after trying to find more blogs by high school students and wanted to document my journey as a student at boarding school. I currently go to school in Hyderabad, India. It is a boarding school and I’ve been going there for 3 years but it was in the first year (grade 8) that I was introduced to UWC and it was my dream ever since. In my final year of the MYP program, so grade 10, is when I actually applied through my national committee and as you can tell from the title of this blog, I will be attending UWC Atlantic college in Wales, the UK next year! Exciting as it is, I still have around 5 months until I attend and so until then, I hope you can bear with my stress of finals and the 3-month summer vacation.

Can’t wait to fill this blog with endless posts about my life, travel and school.

Until my next post…

-Iman

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