Indore (Madhya Pradesh): She is the power that creates and enriches life turning a house into a home by empowering everything around her with her nurturing quality. Yes, it’s every woman around us and today, February 13, we dedicate a day to celebrate the women in our lives.
Every year, on this day, National Women’s Day is celebrated in honour of Sarojini Naidu’s birthday. With the power of her femininity, she wrote poetry, but never failed to stand up for rights. She is an ideal for many young women today, who are spreading their power across the world.
To celebrate this day, we dedicate the day to Women: The Creator and Empress Leading Our Country’s Bright Future.
Let’s meet a few such empresses who are leading the change and brightening the city by empowering the good around us every day.
First-ever woman driving public bus in the country
The first-ever woman to drive a public bus in the country, Ritu Narwale, belongs to Indore. She was the first woman to drive the Pink i-bus on the BRTS for the first time in the state. After several days of training, Ritu had operated the bus for the first time by seating female passengers. More than 50 women passengers travelled on this bus.
Ritu stands true to her name by consistently fulfilling her responsibilities with diligence. Her trainer calls her ‘perfect’. Ritu was tested to drive the first bus, which she passed with flying colours. Now, she is a role model.
Being Sarvani, they empower city with culture & campaigns
Leading women as power of change and working on various aspects of growth, Youth Hostel’s first-ever women’s wing, named Sarvani, was started in Indore. Founder of the group Kusum Singh began this as an initiative to empower the city with pink power.
From reviving the culture of Malwa to cleaning Sirpur Lake—many drives and campaigns are run by this group of women. ‘Sarvani is the name of Goddess Durga, which is truly how women are. They’re the leaders and warriors, so we're just doing our bit as women for our country,’ Kusum said.
Understanding and fighting for rights of mute animals
Taking animal love to the next level by quitting her job to work as a full-time animal activist, Priyanshu Jain inspires people to act humanely and treat all living beings with respect and love.
She fights for the rights of animals and is now the state coordinator of MP Police against Animal Cruelty. She fosters a variety of rescue animals in her home—from stray dogs and rabbits to turtles and birds. ‘Most people don’t adopt Indian cats and other Indian-origin animals, so I have to foster them for years,’ Priyanshu says.
Education is essential for empowerment & change
Leading one of the largest groups of entrepreneurs in the city to empower the city, FICCI FLO chairperson Meetu Kohli is an inspirational ideal for budding female entrepreneurs. She runs a furniture store in the city.
Chairperson of the group, Meetu believes in educating and empowering women to lead long-lasting change in the city. She recently headed a webinar on women’s rights with advocate Veena Gowda, who is a lawyer for women’s rights and practises in Mumbai High Court.
A forever campaigner for environment and the city
From countering her personal life’s struggles to empowering tribal women, Padma Shri Janak McGilligan Palta is an inspirational role model. For her, life has no retirement and she dedicates every waking hour to attempts to make the city better.
Taking on the challenges for a cleaner Indore and India, she is running a campaign to use wind power and solar power and organise waste-free events. ‘I always carry my glass, because even if we can just eradicate the use of plastic bottles, cups and glasses, it would be a very good change,’ Janak said.
She is also a cancer warrior. She not only battled cancer, but also underwent one of the first-ever open heart surgeries performed in the country.
To India, by Sarojini Naidu
O YOUNG through all thy immemorial years!
Rise, Mother, rise, regenerate from thy gloom,
And, like a bride high-mated with the spheres,
Beget new glories from thine ageless womb!
The nations that in fettered darkness weep
Crave thee to lead them where great mornings break . . . .
Mother, O Mother, wherefore dost thou sleep?
Arise and answer for thy children’s sake!
Thy Future calls thee with a manifold sound
To crescent honours, splendours, victories vast;
Waken, O slumbering Mother and be crowned,
Who once wert empress of the sovereign Past.