Tamil Nadu RISES!

Published: 3 November 2016

This post was originally published online on One Billion Rising: India Chapter website. Follow the One Billion Rising 2017 campaign across India HERE.

One of the national partner organizations, EKTA, has been a part of the One Billion Rising campaign, since 2012. Throughout the years, EKTA has involved marginalized women in creating awareness on violence against women, safe public spaces, property rights, equal wages, and on the whole, gender equality. This year, EKTA has decided to have multiple launches that are due to focus on the tribal population, the landless, people working in cemeteries, transgenders, the physically challenged, and the youth.

Their first launch was organized on the 24th of October at Nambikkai Centre, Killai, which is situated near Chidambaram, Cuddalore District with the surrounding tribal population. Nearly 80 persons comprising of children, youth, men, and women from the nearby village of Kalaigner Nagar participated. The 2017 One Billion Rising campaign and its theme of “Solidarity Against Exploitation of Women” was explained to the participants. A discussion was held on the various issues faced by the people of the village. Alcoholism, early marriage, poverty, and dropping out of school for livelihood purposes were identified as the primary causes for the increased violence against women and girl children.

The participants then chorused loudly and together with slogans on gender equality. A powerful dance was performed by adolescent girls and boys to songs that they had prepared as well as to the OBR song.

Their thirst for dance knew no bounds. Their positive energy and joy was tremendously visible, as they set their fears aside.