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If you are interested in knowing what Muslim women were thinking, debating and writing a century ago, then there won’t come a better opportunity your way than this Sunday (1st May) at India International Centre (IIC) Annexe, Delhi, 6 PM onwards. Raschakra, in association with Council for Social Development (CSD), is presenting a recital performance, “Hum Khawateen” based on the writings of Muslim women published almost a century ago. The performance’s texts are drawn from five articles written roughly 100 years ago and published in different Urdu Magazines such as Ustani (Delhi), Tahzeeb e Niswan (Lahore) and Khatoon (Aligarh).


A compilation (Kalam e Niswan) of such articles was published in 2013 under the editorship of Purwa Bhardwaj, who is also one of the four performers for Sunday evening. Other performers include Alka Ranjan, Shweta Tripathi and Rizwana Fatima. It has been directed by Patna based senior theater artist Vinod Kumar. What is remarkable is that these articles debate and discuss issues that are equally relevant in the contemporary times. The themes of these articles range from Politics to Education to Press Freedom and Socio-Economic problems of Muslim community in particular and the country in general.

Kalam e Niswan

According to Purwa, “While these writings help us to understand the minds of Muslim women, at the same time, it also compels us to think, rethink and question our understating and popular notions about Muslim women, their thinking, choices, dreams and contributions.”

To know more about Kalam e Niswan, click here