Kamla Bhasin passes away at 75, who had emerged as one of the most charismatic and prominent leaders of the women’s movement in India and other south Asian nations in the 1970s, always held that feminism was not a war between men and women but a war of ideologies. “One that elevates men and gives them power, and the other, that advocates for equality!” she said.
Bhasin was suffering from cancer. She passed away on Saturday morning.
Her fellow activist Kavita Srivastava said Bhasin “celebrated life whatever the adversity”. “Kamla Bhasin, our dear friend, passed away around 3am 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,” Srivastava wrote on Twitter.
In an article for Hindustan Times, she wrote, “Changing this mindset requires a cultural tsunami. Before we stop violence against women, we need to demolish innumerable religious, cultural, and linguistic practices that are considered normal. For example, words like ‘pati’ and ‘swami’ for husbands must go. These words mean ‘master’ or ‘owner’. In free India, an adult woman cannot — and should not — have an owner. There are many more similar words and expressions that demean and insult women. They, too, need to be purged from our consciousness.”
Pakistan acts like ‘fire fighter’
In a strong retort against Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan’s comments at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), India said on Friday the neighbouring country is actually an “arsonist” disguising itself as a “fire-fighter”. Exercising the right of reply, the blistering retort was put forward at the UNGA session by India’s first secretary Sneha Dubey, moments after Imran Khan raked up the Kashmir issue in his own address at the UN summit.
“We keep hearing that Pakistan is a ‘victim of terrorism’; this is the country which is an arsonist disguising itself as a fire-fighter,” said young Indian diplomat at the UNGA session, slamming Pakistan’s Imran Khan for highlighting the Kashmir issue in his speech.
Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan in his UNGA address spoke about India’s August 5, 2019 decision to abrogate Article 370 of the Indian constitution—which led to the bifurcation of Jammu & Kashmir into two Union territories—as well as the death of pro-Pakistan separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani .
India, said Dubey, was exercising its right of reply to “one more attempt” by the Pakistani prime minister to “tarnish the image of this august forum by bringing in matters internal to my country”. She said that Khan was even going so far as to “spew falsehoods on the world stage”.
Dubey highlighted that under such a backdrop, where the entire global community has been under strict vigil Pakistan’s role in sponsoring terrorism, its prime minister Imran Khan’s comments on terrorism are uncalled for. In this context, the Indian diplomat said that the Union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh “were, are and will always be an integral and inalienable part of India.” “This includes the areas that are under the illegal occupation of Pakistan. We call upon Pakistan to immediately vacate all areas under its illegal occupation.”
‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ chants echo in New York. PM waves at crowd
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is on a three-day official visit to the United States, was on Friday night (local time) seen waving at a crowd outside his hotel in New York, where Indian-Americans and members of the diaspora gathered to meet him. Loud chants of “Vande Mataram” and “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” rang through the New York neighbourhood as the Prime Minister turned to the people cheering for him and joyously waved at them, before going inside the hotel. PM Modi landed in New York moments earlier, after concluding a series of key meets in Washington—including a Quad Leaders’ summit hosted by US president Joe Biden at the White House.
The Prime Minister’s three-day US tour will now be capped by his schedule in New York, where Modi is set to address the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). He is expected to highlight a host of pressing global issues – including the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, the need to combat terrorism, and climate change, among others.