Fight against acid attacks gains new support
Actor Mammootty and many others join Stop Acid Attacks’ fight for the rights of acid attack survivors, writes Alok Dixit
After Satyamev Jayate’s episode on Masculinity came on air, my partner Laxmi received hundreds of phone calls. The Stop Acid Attacks Facebook page got around 5,000–7,000 new likes every day for a week after telecast.
Mammootty, the superstar of Malayalam cinema, got to know about our campaign when he watched the show. He invited Laxmi and me to Kerala and decided to aid Laxmi’s further treatment at Padanjali Ayurvedic Skin Treatment Centre in Palakkad. His kind and generous gesture has strengthened our hope. Moreover, he also agreed to become our campaign's ambassador from South India. We will now broaden our efforts to start a campaign against acid violence in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala.
On December 10, World Human Rights Day, we opened a cafe in Agra called Sheroes. The people who work here are women acid attack survivors who have fought back for life and are now, on a course to define themselves as ‘fighters’. Many customers and friends who came here appreciated the show on Masculinity.
It is extremely painful that there are thousands of women in India who are becoming victims of acid attacks in India. In 2005, Laxmi had filed a PIL with the Supreme Court asking for a ban on the open sale of acid in markets. Her triumph came in the form of The Court issuing clear directives on the same, prohibiting over-the-counter sales. An amendment in the IPC followed, making acid attacks a non-bailable offence. In spite of this, it is disheartening that the open sale of acid in markets continues.
To continue our fight against this, we recently organized a protest at Jantar Mantar in Delhi where we received an overwhelming support. People of various ages and classes came forward to support us and stood up for the rights of acid attack survivors.
We thank Satyamev Jayate for taking our fight to millions across India. No one can really estimate the impact of a show which gives you goosebumps and opens your mind.
I would also like to invite readers to contribute to the work we do at Stop Acid Attacks and Cafe Sheroes by emailing us at .
- Alok Dixit