Sunday, May 3, 2015

The Brave Girl Sunitha Krishnan

Source : Wikipedia 

At the age of 15, while working on a neo-literacy campaign for underpriviledged community, Sunitha was gang raped by eight men.This incident served as the impetus for what she does today.

Sunitha Krishnan, born in 1972, is an Indian social activist and chief functionary and co-founder of Prajwala, a non-governmental organization that rescues, rehabilitates and reintegrates sex-trafficked victims into society.

Sunitha was born in Bangalore, to Palakkad Malayali parents Raju Krishnan and Nalini Krishnan.[2] She saw most of the country early on while traveling from one place to another with her father, who worked with the Department of Survey which makes maps for the entire country.[3]
Sunitha was a precocious child. Her passion for social work became manifest when, at the age of 8 years, she started teaching dance to mentally retarded children.[4] By the age of 12, she was running schools in slums for underprivileged children.[5] At the age of 15, while working on a neo-literacy campaign for the Dalit community, Sunitha was gang raped by eight men.[6] This incident served as the impetus for what she does today.[7]
Sunitha studied in Central Government Schools in Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi, and the Northeastern parts of India. After obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences from St. Joseph’s College in Bangalore, Sunitha completed her MSW (medical & psychiatric) from Roshni Nilaya, Mangalore and later her PhD in social work.[8] To complete the fieldwork requirement for the doctorate, Sunitha took up the subject of the life of sex workers.[9]
In 1995, Sunitha, who had become an ardent feminist, was arrested–along with more than a dozen other activists–for protesting against the staging of the Miss World competition in Bangalore, her hometown. As she had a leadership role in organizing the protests (including incidents of brick-batting), and had also issued threats to the organizers and sponsors, Sunitha was sentenced to jail for two months. Her parents, who attended every hearing, were shocked. Her radical views had long estranged her from her family, and this proved to be the last straw for them. Another point of conflict between Sunitha and her parents (who were practicing Hindus) was her close association with Brother Verghese Theknath, a catholic priest and evangelist. Sunitha has become acquainted with Verghese Theknath while working with slum dwellers, a prime constituency for the priest's evangelism.
When Sunitha was released from jail after two months, she found that her parents were not supportive of her choices or lifestyle. In order to make a fresh start, Sunitha decided to move to Hyderabad, to which city Brother Verghese Theknath's mission had lately transferred him. It was in Hyderabad that she met Brother Jose Vetticatil, who was then Director of Boys’ Town, a Catholic outreach mission aimed at slum-dwellers.[10] Sunitha soon became involved with the housing problems of slum dwellers. When the homes of people living by the city’s Musi River were slated to be bulldozed for a “beautification” project, she organized protests and stalled the scheme.[11] This was in 1995.


In 1996, sex workers living in Mehboob ki Mehandi, a red light area in Hyderabad, were evacuated. As a result, thousands of women, who were caught in the clutches of prostitution, were left homeless. Having found a like-minded person in Brother Jose Vetticatil, a missionary, Sunitha Krishnan started a transition school at the vacated brothel to prevent the second generation from being trafficked.[12] In its early years, Sunitha had to sell her jewelry and even most of her household utensils to make ends meet at Prajwala.[13]
Today, Prajwala stands upon five pillars: prevention, rescue, rehabilitation, reintegration and advocacy. The organization extends moral, financial, legal and social support to victims and ensures that perpetrators are brought to justice.[14] To date, Prajwala has rescued, rehabilitated, or served over 9,500 survivors of sex trafficking,[15][16] and the scale of their operations makes them the largest anti-trafficking shelter in the world.[17]

Please google for more details on Dr. Sunitha Krishnan

No comments:

Post a Comment