Women’s rights activist Kamla Bhasin passed away this morning. She was diagnosed with cancer a few months ago.
News of her death was shared on Twitter by activist Kavita Srivastava. Srivastava wrote, "Kamla Bhasin, our dear friend, passed away around 3 am today 25th Sept. This is a big setback for the women's movement in India and the South Asian region. She celebrated life whatever the adversity. Kamla you will always live in our hearts. In Sisterhood, which is in deep grief."
Born 24 April 1946 in Rajasthan, Bhasin was the fourth of six children of her doctor father.
She is best known for her work with Sangat - A Feminist Network and for her poem Kyunki main ladki hoon, mujhe padhna hai.
A social scientist by training, she was actively engaged with issues related to development, education, gender, media and several others for over 35 years. She began her work for the empowerment of the rural and urban poor in 1972, with a voluntary organization in Rajasthan, India. From 1976 to 2001, she worked with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN. She resigned from her job at the U.N. in 2002, to work with Sangat, of which she is a founder member and Adviser.
Read her full poem here: