Across India, various events have been planned. We have flash mobs, marches, protests, cultural events amongst other plans.
New Delhi has planned an auto-rickshaw and female taxi driver rally, flash mobs outside city malls and parks, protest marches in front of the secretariat, street plays in various areas, and a mega cultural event in the centre of the city in the evening, with famous musicians and theatre activists. We hope to energize all of Delhi today!
Mumbai has planned a cultural event, where a new CD of women’s rights songs will be released. A fun hula-hoop dance will be done on One Billion Rising music!
Ahemdabad is rising with a large march with 10,000 people! The march will have decorated camel carts, with various performers. Lawyers will be present to sensitize the public on the various laws available to women, and bands will sing songs about the movement.
Vadodara is rising with a night walk on 14th February to celebrate V-Day. Bhopal is rising with a public meeting in which survivors of rape will come forward and narrate their stories. Raipur is rising with a poster making event, and a collective singing of activist songs.
Himachal Pradesh has planned letter writing by middle school students to their parents and teachers, expressing how they have faced injustice at home. They will also be a poster making event on the themes of patriarchy, masculinity and violence against women. There is morning patrolling organized in villages towards gender sensitization. What is really interesting is the dialogue between the police chief and survivors of violence planned, which will be followed by a protest.
Kolkata is rising in myriad ways – there is a workshop being organized on the sexual harassment at workplace act, followed by a film screening on the experiences of trans people in the Indian education system.
Madurai is rising with a special event where guests include the local police anti-dowry cell and the district legal services authority.
Siliguri is rising with a secret ‘dance’ that all the students will do in a local mall which will be introduced by a drum performance by a local group of drummers from a tea plantation! This will involve 20 schools and over 500 students. There will also be other events outside the mall to sensitize the public about issues related to violence against women and girls. They are also creating a wall of justice, where the public can post messages.
Srinagar is rising with story writing, where people write their story of being violated, being perpetrator of any violence against a woman, being accomplice to it, being witness to it or being a whistle blower.
Lucknow is rising with releasing 1000 balloons by the president of the state’s women’s commission. They will also be making a human chain and enable people to raise their voices against sexual violence.
Kerala is rising with an auto rally! Goa is rising with students from local colleges creating awareness about laws available to women in rural areas. They will also have cultural expressions around the theme with focus of justice. The college at Panaji will organise an art and written expression day on the theme of justice in love. A women’s group will have the screening of the film “I am Nirbhaya” followed by collating voices from the women on how we can move towards justice. On 14th February, Memorial for Missing and Murdered Women will be observed.
Beed is rising by organizing an open discussion with men, boys and women and girls on ‘Love and Masculinity’!
Rajasthan is rising by having a candle march and silent vigil to reclaim the night. Further, they are having meetings to felicitate women in communities who have risen against violence against women and girls. They will also gather outside the high court to demand for restoring the state women’s rights commission.
There are also other risings planned in various parts of India!
On the 14th of February, people of all ages will be rising for justice and raising awareness on the situation of Violence against Women in Maldives.
During the days leading up to the 14th of February, local television and radio channels have been brought on board, to talk about why we are rising for justice for survivors of violence against women.
On the 14th of February, people of all ages will be taking to the streets in six main locations in Male’. The aim is to gain attention for the cause through dancing to the Dhivehi (local language) cover to Break the Chain: Kanbalun. During the demonstration, messages will be displayed regarding violence against women. The Maldives Police Service will be demonstrating the basics of self-defense at three of these locations. On the same afternoon, Hulhumale Rowing Association, will be hosting a rowing event on a nearby island, Hulhumale’. Messages will also be carried by the rowers during this event.
They are currently also in the process of creating a music event for this year’s Rising. The song is scheduled to be released on the next Orange Day, 25th of February 2014.
Group skits and painting competitions on gender issues and women’s rights were organized in 32 schools covering Khyber Pakhtunkhaw and Punjab provinces of Pakistan. These activities will culminate today.
Additionally students of fine arts and media from University of Balochistan have been given different awareness sessions on women’s issues and OBR campaign.
OBR signature campaign was initiated in two grand schools from Swat. Special efforts were made to kick off this campaign because of the resistance faced due to religious extremism.
Pakistan also has three mega events today.
One event will include documentaries and songs on women’s issues and rising. The famous dancer Nighat Chaudhady and her troupe have planned a special choreographed dance! A seminar is also being organized, called “Justice for All”, based on the implementation of a women-related law. Women, lawyers, religious scholars, journalists, students, teachers and civil society members will participate in this seminar.
Afghanistan is planning a grand march with 113 member organizations, and to hold press conferences across the country!
Nepal is rising! Students of a college in Kathmandu are gathering at their rooftop and dancing for justice! Their call is to end violence against women in Nepal and South Asia!
Bangladesh is rising big time! The activities go on all day today throughout the country! The first gathering is outside the Supreme Court, where people from all walks of life – students, garment workers, youth, women activists, garment workers among others will come together. They will also chant slogans and garment workers will talk about their struggles.
The main programme will start at 4 pm with dramatisation and testimonies of 3 cases. These cases have been chosen to represent all violence that women face and the total lack of any form of justice. First there is Kalpana Chakma, an indigenous woman from the Chittagong Hill Tracts, who was abducted by an army officer in June 1996 with no acceptable response given yet about her status. Till date there has not been a valid or coherent investigation report placed, currently, there is yet another attempt at trying to sideline the issue and have yet another investigation. They stand by her family, friends and the hill people and will continue to do so until we get proper justice and a report of her abduction. The second case taken up is of Hindu women who were raped during the recent attacks by religious and political bigots just last month as an aftermath of the elections and as a prelude to trying to incite fear and religious bigotry in what used to be a syncretic culture. Like in 1971, when approx 200.000 women were raped by the occupation army and their collaobrators, it brings out that women’s bodies and rape of women symbolises control, subjugation and conquering a community. Rape and occupation in whatever form are synonymous. The background will be a translation of Alan Ginsberg poem ‘September on Jessore Road’ sung by a beautiful singer from Kolkata, since this took place in the same area, and a dramatised reading of the case studies will be done by one of our leading theatre director and her group along with the V-Day women activists. The third is a testimony of a young woman journalist who was brutally assaulted by extremists during a rally organised against the Shahbagh youth movement. Lastly we end with the Break the Chain dance where all will participate. Dancers have been practicing and from the call given on Facebook, we have had a good number of enthusiasts participating, again consisting of survivors of violence, the V-Day group, political and other activists, dancers, singers, transgender people, actors, poets, writers, bloggers, workers, students, trade unions, and many such more.
Outside Dhaka, in all 64 districts, and most of the 460 sub districts,people will gather, hold human chains, do plays, dance, sing, shout slogans, hold rallies, mock trials etc. A signature campaign has been taken up and we plan to submit the declaration along with the memorandum and the signatures to the Speaker of our Parliament and relevant Ministries. Bangladeshi women are all set to STRIKE, DANCE & RISE really loud and clear and the message will be sent to all corners of the country!