What happens when women from the heartlands of rural India set up a newspaper to tell stories from a feminist perspective, stories that challenge mainstream representations of gender, caste, class and religious divisions?
Marking Dalit History Month 2022, Columbia Global Centers | Mumbai invites you to an online panel discussion on the journey of Khabar Lahariya, an award-winning women-led media organization and subject of the recently Oscar-nominated documentary, ‘Writing with Fire’. As part of the Center’s Writing Indian Stories series, the discussion will address the challenges and decisions encountered by Khabar Lahariya’s team of journalists. Panelists will reflect on the editorial vision that guides the organization’s documentation and storytelling activities, the impact that Khabar Lahariya has had on the lives of its community of women writers and staff, and on the larger landscape of independent coverage on rural India.
About the Speakers:
Farah Naqvi is an Indian writer, consultant and activist. A post-graduate from Columbia University, she works on gender and minority rights on justice and development. She is a founding member of Nirantar, an NGO working on gender and education; credited with founding the newspaper Khabar Lahariya. Farah has authored two books – 'Waves in the Hinterland' (2008) and 'Working with Muslims: Beyond Burqa and Triple Talaq' (2018) about how civil society engages with India’s largest minority. She has been a board member at Oxfam India. Farah has worked in Broadcast Journalism, and co-directed ‘The Colour of My Home’ (2018), a film about violent displacement and rebuilding broken lives, after the Muzaffarnagar violence against Muslims in 2013. She was a member of the National Advisory Council of the Government of India, under the UPA government till 2014.
Kavita Devi is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of Khabar Lahariya. A Banda local herself - she likes to call herself Kavita Bundelkhandi, having chosen to drop her last name deliberately many years ago - she is also the region's first Dalit woman anchor to host her own news and views weekly, The Kavita Show. The only Dalit member of the Editor's Guild of India, Kavita brings with her several years of field reporting, having started out as a reporter herself, and often reports on special stories even today. Viewed as a formidable figure of inspiration and empowerment locally, especially for women, Kavita is also a TED speaker.