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A Mother’s respect, a Nation’s Pride- The Freedom Walk

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Doesn’t your blood boil when someone abuses your mother? Or when someone disrespects her? I mean, come on, who wouldn’t be furious? Most of us will say “Of course, why that is even a question?” or maybe “I’ll kick the hell out of him”; and some will even hurl a series of abuses towards the person in return. We are angry, obviously! So why don’t we show the same anger towards those idiots who do not know how to respect our National Flag? Isn’t Mother India our mother? Don’t we know what a national flag is supposed to mean? So, let’s revise our basic civics we learnt back in school. Our National Flag is not just a piece of orange-white-green colored paper. It is a symbol of respect and pride for the Nation! It means we respect our nationality and we are proud to be Indian. That’s the idea behind hoisting our flag and saluting it. It deserves to be up in the air, and not on the ground just to be trampled upon or be thrown in dustbins. It should kill us to see such a view, as proud citizens of India.  The Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971, clearly states that any act that disrespects the Indian Flag shall attract penalty and prosecution.

Every year on 15th August and 26th January, we see ‘patriots’ showing off their patriotism by waving the flag, humming desh-bhakti songs and not to forget wearing mini flags on their heart. And what about the poor flag, the next day? Thrown on the ground, people walking all over them, some even lying in gutters and some covered in paan-stains! WHY? The Azaadi-fever is over? Well, the feeling that you get when you see such an insult to your country’s flag is the actual Desh-Bhakti! Remember, the only time a flag can be placed horizontally is when it is kept on a martyr’s body to honor his sacrifice for his country.

Thus, to bring awareness about the same, an NGO in Thane- Aarna Foundation got associated with Yuva-Niti with the help of VPM and Satish Pradhan Dnyansadhana Colleges’ NSS and NCC students. They conducted a silent walk called as “The Freedom Walk” which involved 100+ students to make the people aware about such malpractices and to stop it. They walked for about 7.5 kms marking a silent protest against this issue. It was alarming for them to find 25 flags lying in dustbins and on the ground. Mr. Chinu Kwatra, co-founder of the NGO says, “If we can’t respect the flag, why buy it? Patriotism is not for one day. It’s a sensitive issue which people should understand and treat the flag respectfully. It is everyone’s duty.”

So you’ll ask- what to do? How to dispose a flag in the most dignified way? The answer is, let’s not buy it in the first place! When you buy something, you ought to dispose it after it has served its purpose. But a flag doesn’t deserve such a disposal. Why do we need to buy paper and plastic flags, when we can unfurl a cloth flag in the air?  Will it not give a better feeling of independence, when we see our Tiranga in the air, swaying freely? Or the easiest thing could be wearing a tri-color in paint on the wrist of the right hand which can be washed off later on.

Mr. Chinu Kwatra would also like to thank all the youth (mentioned below) who played a major role to make this event a successful and hopes that we the people of India, will come together henceforth and stop such insults to our pride, our mother, our Tiranga! JAI HIND!!

Akshay Mandhare, Tanvi Mane, Moushmi Kajbaje, Pranay Vichare, Vikrant Khupte & Aniket Ahirwar

Satish Pradhan Dnyansadhana College

NSS Students– Akshata Jadhav, Preeti Panchal, Sayali Mhamumkar, Nikita Nalawade,Pratiksha Bote, Nisha Pawar, Komal Shinde, Nisha Kadam, Sonali Patil, Shraddha Nilesh Kolge, Rupali S, Varsha Jadhav, Rina Kamble, Priyanka Bhosale, Apurva Parab, Jyoti Borge, Vaibhav H, Suresh Jadhav, Kuldeep Patil, Mangesh B, Sangam Gaikwad, Rushikesh Ghanekar, Aakash Kale, Karan M,Aakash Dhotre, Pratik Mane, Digamber Shinde, Vinay Shilmkar, Vishal Mhaske, Rameshwar Deshmane

NCC Students– Vishal Thorat, Aditya Gaikwad, Aniket Sonawane, Vijay Mukhiya, Amit Singh, Suraj Rana, Tajmohmad Saiyaali Shaikh,Kiran Bhogale, Vinod Kumawat, Ganesh Kumawat, Narendra Shivsinde, Saurabh Boyane, Vishal Gupta, Kiran Shinde, Sanjay Kumawat, Omkar Vitthal Shinde, Vishal Damare, Rohan Shete, Omkar Nikam, Sushil Medhe, Risikesh Waghmare, Aniket Mane

V.P.M’s R.Z Shah College, Mulund East

NSS Students– Neha Bhoir, Riya Kadwadkar, Shravani Turai, Priyankar Gauda, Pooja Suvarna, Vaishnavi Vaity, Saideep Shetty, Aman Garud, Sandesh Garud, Roshan Salian, Puneeth Kotian, Kirthi Gowda, Prajwal Shetty, Sairaj Shetty, Omkar Vende, Nikhil Gangan, Shreenidhi Kulkarni, Sanket Jadhav, Bharat Jangid, Sandeep Mahadik, Adish Shisupal, Mobin Shaikh, Sujay Malagi, Sai Sawant, Ajay Verma, Pranav Shirke, Gaurav Shelatkar, Parvej Shaikh, Ankur Rajak, Harshal Gadekar, Suraksha Shetty, Srushti Nalavade

#indiaflag #independenceday #republicday #respectflag #nationalflaf #indian #patriotic



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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

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MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

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A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

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As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

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A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
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