Noted social activist Daya Bhai was in Calicut recently to inaugurate state sthree suraksha sammelanam (Conference on women’s safety). The Kozhikode town hall witnessed a packed audience, both men and women to see Daya Bhai and listen to her inspiring words.
Born in Kottayam -Pala in Kerala, she migrated to Madhyapradesh and lived and worked among the downtrodden and tribal folk to empower them. She left Kerala at an age of sixteen. Her earlier name was Mercy Mathew.
After her schooling in Kerala, Daya Bhai went to Bihar for her degree course. She took her master’s in Social Work from Mumbai. For the last thirty three years, she is in the forefront of human rights and women’s empowerment among the tribal folk.
She used her knowledge and calibre to make those people, empowered. She fought for their rights including education, human rights, employment and justice.
She has been an angel or role model for thousands of women who live in backward places.
Speaking to the Calicut New Media (CNM), Daya Bhai openly expressed her displeasure in Kerala’s drawback in women’s safety and human rights. Also, she said that Malayalees’ mindset should transform more positively from a superficial perspective.
She says that everyone has a role to play in this regard. An uprising is the need of the hour. Everyone should fight for freedom and question the injustice.
There is a fallacy that women are very weak in this male-dominated society. This very concept should change, first. No women should suffer injustice and lack of freedom anymore. Girls have their own individual freedom and make sure that they are not in chains. Boys and girls have equal rights and responsibilities in this society.
All of us have the duty to protect the womanhood from any sort of harassment. Women should realise and utilise their immense inner strength to fight for justice and freedom. The society as a whole should support her fight for truth and dignity.
When asked some women become culprits in certain sex rackets and other exploitation, she said there were many such cases reported, recently.
“There are some women who involved in criminal conspiracy to exploit young girls. Such women…we cannot call them women at all. Their inner self is something strange.
Women who engage in violence against women are disgrace to our society. ”
Asked about seeking political and organizational support for women’s rights, she said, “There is nothing wrong in seeking support if we ensure these associations should not misguide us somewhere.”
“If political ego or interest works out, it will be very difficult to stick on your business. Any time you may be diverted and fall prey on the hands of political interests.”
Kerala-no more her dream land
When asked whether she longed to come back in Kerala after her long stay in Madhya Pradesh, Daya Bhai had no doubt to clarify her stand, “No…Never…
I don’t to want to live in this state, even if it is my birth place. Here, majority people are very much covetous, selfish and superficial. Everything is show-off. In education and appearance you can find decent people here. But this land is full of acting. You can’t easily find out a real sincerity here. Nothing touches your heart. Kerala should change in a positive manner. ”-a simple, but powerful Daya Bhai said