Bonded labor: The ugly reality of modern India

Featured image credit: Bishnu Sarangi from Pixabay Trigger warning: This story contains physical assault, harassment, and suicidal thoughts that readers may find disturbing. “I was barely eight years old when I touched those silk threads for the first time, so it is ironic that I have never owned a silk sari in my life… theyContinue reading “Bonded labor: The ugly reality of modern India”

Enid Blyton, JK Rowling, and the hollowness of White English feminism

Like most 90s kids who grew up in India, my initiation into the English language was through Enid Blyton books. At 30, it had been a while since I consciously thought of her work. When a friend requested me to write a crossover fanfiction where the Famous Five get together with the Harry Potter trioContinue reading “Enid Blyton, JK Rowling, and the hollowness of White English feminism”

Creating safe spaces to be Muslim and queer

M. Iman, who goes by the name Queer Muslimah on Instagram, wants to create a safe space for queer Muslim youth, the kind of space she craved while growing up in a small city in the United States. As a religious Muslim, it took a while for her to accept that she is a genderqueerContinue reading “Creating safe spaces to be Muslim and queer”

A migrant laborer’s arduous journey back home

Content Warning: Some details may be disturbing to readers. The government of India, when it announced the Janta curfew on March 21, 2020, forgot to relay any information about how the most vulnerable sections of the country would be protected during the course of the pandemic. While a Rs. 20 lakh crore package was announcedContinue reading “A migrant laborer’s arduous journey back home”

This is why I switched to menstrual cups and you could too

How will it go in? It’s huge, my vagina is tiny. What if I get an allergy? Periods are already painful, I don’t want to inflict more pain on myself!  These are all the things I have heard from my friends and acquaintances when I suggest that they switch to menstrual cups. All fair concerns,Continue reading “This is why I switched to menstrual cups and you could too”

Gulab Pasha: When Muslims perform Seva in the time of COVID

“My life is dedicated to the service of India through the religion of nonviolence which I believe to be the root of Indianism. My mission is to convert every Indian, even a fascist, and finally the world to nonviolence. It is the only way to regulate mutual relations, whether political, economic, social or religious,” Gulab told us, adding how India was built on the principles of Ahimsa. “To me it means that you may not offend anybody; you may not harbor uncharitable thought, even when it comes to those who consider you their enemy. Even when the police detained me under the unlawfully-imposed Section 144 in Bangalore in December 2019 during the anti-CAA protests, I was Gandhi.”

Pride Month 2020: Happy coming out stories

For many people in the LGBTQIA+ community, coming out is an ongoing experience, one that is littered with instant rejections, acceptance, or sometimes even a journey towards understanding. This milestone moment has many conflicting layers of emotions associated with it. You can come out when you want, at your own pace, or never at all,Continue reading “Pride Month 2020: Happy coming out stories”