Devina Buckshee is the Program and Outreach Officer at Safecity. She is a recent MA (hons) graduate of Sociology and International Relations from the University of Edinburgh. She is deeply interested in academic research and public policy, specifically gender mainstreaming and development related work. As an intersectional feminist and writer, she believes in bringing her skills of ethnography, journalism and documentation to give a voice to the people who need it most. In the past, she has worked on projects with refugees in Scotland and Germany, and with the Godrej India Culture Lab in Mumbai. She is also a huge animal lover and enjoys travelling with her dog Chaos.
Women’s Day Celebration with WE Action Group
March 8th saw a worldwide celebration of Women’s Day – but in Mumbai we did it a little differently. For us, March 15th was the special day as the WE action group prepared an event for our members and the community.
The WE action group, initiated by Majlis Law Center, is a network of lawyers, social workers, human rights activists and concerned citizens collectively working towards addressing issues relating to rights of the marginalized across Mumbai.
Our group met regularly for over two months, brainstorming all ideas under the sun to come up with an event itinerary for Women’s Day. Discussion finally lead to a peace rally and human chain in Behrampada to signify solidarity and hope. This was followed by a gathering in the heart of the community to watch a gripping street play. There were various talks interspersed with a lot of chants of slogans as well. Throughout the event we made sure that a white banner would be present, in continuation with last year’s event, for people to paint imprints of their hands. This added a fun, quirky and colourful element into the mix and definitely attracted the crowds.
Interestingly, our dress code this time around was pink and white. Last year pink was rejected as being stereotypical but this year we reclaimed pink and subtly fought back against the inane gendering of colours.
Our main focus in organising the event was to engage the community and throughout the afternoon the air buzzed with activism and solidarity for women in India.
My personal highlight? When a little 10 year old girl, on her afternoon walk with her puppy, came to find the source of all the cheers and slogans and drifted toward our gathering. She stayed for a while, listening to the chants, and curiously approached me to know more. A big smile followed and she, then, asked about signing up and helping immediately.