“The movements led by women have always made great differences in India”, said Sarah Joseph at the session on Lost Spaces and Lost Lives: In the context of Budhini.
The talk was regarding the lives and struggles of revolutionary women and the various movements piloted by them. Activist K. Ajitha also spoke at the session moderated by C. S. Chandrika.
The session witnessed the launch of the memoir Oormayile ee Nalangal, written by K.Ajitha. Later, Sarah Joseph spoke on the narrative of her upcoming novel, Budhini, set to release the coming month.
It tells the story of Budhini Mejhan, a hapless tribal girl who was labelled as the bride of India by Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru. She was ostracized by her community for the same. On December 6, 1959, when Nehru arrived to inaugurate the Panchet dam in Jharkhand, he invited Budhini, a teenage girl working at the Damodar Valley Corporation to execute the switch on function. When she arrived on stage, she was garlanded by Nehru as a token of honour. The incident changed her life. According to her tribe, a man garlanding a woman equals marrying her, which resulted in her outcast.
The panel discussed about the several struggles women have gone through to achieve their objectives. K. Ajitha spoke about her personal experience as an ex-naxalite and the differences she had to face in her life.
The session concluded on a hopeful note of considering our lives as a revolt and finding strength in unity to preserve the spaces that could be lost due to our indifference towards the space we live in.