STOP ACID ATTACKS
They got attacked with acid when they were so young. By people who tried to disfigure them, to destroy their identity, who thought that they could do anything to women and that they could lead them to darkness and silence.
Today, here they are. They started campaigning in Delhi in 2013 to help and rehabilitate acid attacks survivors. The campaign is called “STOP ACID ATTACKS”. Their action spread out all over India. They go to meet survivors in their families and help them come out, intervene when the police do not take up a complaint and follow up on the medical treatment and the ensuing legal procedure. They also report the news cases to the authorities and the medias. The girls don’t want to hide. They design clothes, they opened a café-restaurant in Agra, they do painting, they want to smile, they have different life projects. They also interact with other minorities as rape victims, LGBT communities, old people abandoned by their families, sharing their strength and experience. They refuse to be called “victims” but prefer the term “fighters”.
Photo shows: Laxmi is 24 years old. She was 16 when a suitor threw acid on her after she refused his advances. “I'm from a poor family. My father worked as a chef in a South Delhi home. I became friend with another girl in the neighborhood and her brother soon started proposing to me. I was only 15 and he was 32. On April 18, he messaged me: I love you. I ignored it, but the next day he messaged again: I want an instant reply. Again, I didn't respond. Three days later, I was waiting for a bus in a crowded Central Delhi area in daytime. He approached me with his brother’s girlfriend. Before I knew it, they had flung me onto the road, pinned me down and threw acid on my face. I kept screaming for help but no one stepped forth. Everyone ran in the opposite direction. I could feel my flesh burning and I covered my eyes with my arms. That reflex action saved me from losing my visio