Published: 29th February 2020
BHU students perform 'nukkad natak' on campus portraying violence against women for Women's Day
The play meant for celebrating International Women's Day tried to advocate gender sensitisation and help develop the sense among everyone on campus
Students at the Banaras Hindu University celebrated International Women's Day a week early as the institute might be closed for Holi, which falls on March 9 this year and women's day is celebrated every year on March 8. The students performed a 'nukkad natak' (street play) on the varsity's campus on Saturday afternoon that was aimed at fighting against patriarchy prevalent in our country.
"Gender sensitivity seems to be lacking on our campus. Movements, protests are being conducted across the country to highlight the necessity of women safety, we have also had numerous such demonstrations on campus as violence against women, girls, the girl child is on the rise in India. Rape, sexual harassment in colleges, workplace etc, is taking place everywhere and the administrations of institutes should be working to improve gender sensitivity but they are not doing anything or taking the necessary steps to protect us. Thus, we decided to educate the students at the varsity about women's issues and create a safe space here," says Aakansha, an MA first-year Political Science student at the varsity.
The play meant for celebrating International Women's Day tried to advocate gender sensitisation and help develop the sense among everyone on campus. The numerous ways in which a woman/girl is harassed, demeaned, suppressed in our society, were portrayed through the nukkad natak. "We are trying to show instances of that and also how to attain redressal for these acts, how they can seek help or how these problems can be solved by going to the roots of the evils in society," Aakansha adds.
"Female foeticide is like the beginning of the violence against women, however, if the girl child survives that, she still has to face a lot after that as she grows up. The play also portrays how rape culture is promoted through Bollywood movies and item songs. All the recent horrific rape cases where the victims have also been burned alive, thrown acid at for speaking out against their perpetrators show that the situation is becoming worse with every passing day and no one is ready to take responsibility. All of this has been incorporated in our play so that we can take a step forward in changing this mindset and culture," said a BHU student, who wanted to remain anonymous.
A team of over 20 students performed 'Nari Byatha', the play that depicts what difficulties and obstacles a woman faces throughout her life merely for being born as a girl. Inspired by a YouTube video that had a similar street play, the students said they had also modified parts of it.
The students said they will keep on performing even if the administration tries to stop them at any point. "We feel that the administration has failed to do its duties in terms of organising gender sensitisation workshops, making the campus a safe space for women, so they can't stop us when all of us students have decided to do this on our own," they added.
We tried to contact the administration but haven't received a response yet.