Durba Dey Quit Social Media Only To Make A Comeback With SHEROES
Her SHEROES profile is full of happy posts like these, some inspiring, others making a style statement.
But as they say, everything comes with a price perhaps even inspiration also falls in the same category. Just that it comes with a bigger price.
Thus, 25-year-old Durba Dey from West Bengal writes to me, "My first earning was Rs. 1500. I started taking private tuitions at the age of 17. I had no cycle, so had to walk to reach the student’s house. I completed my school, under graduation, masters and B.Ed without any private tutor. The reason is very simple, I couldn’t afford. But then, we didn't give in to our father's abuses and mishandling us. I always encouraged my mother to fight against injustice and raise her voice."
I am left stunned.
Durba comes from a small town Krishnagar, which is located in district Nadia.
"Ma'am, my small town is approximately 100 km from Kolkata in West Bengal. Women here, feel quite safe. They are treated well and respected. Though some cases of catcalling, stalking and teasing take place, overall, my town is much safer than other places or metros. Women here are given equal opportunities, freedom, value and respect in terms of educated equality. And perhaps this is the reason why I could be so strong in supporting my mother."
But then she doesn't mince words when she adds, "Rather, I would say I have always felt better when I wasn't home. I remember someone mocked my mother for admitting me in an English medium school. It was a relative. I was humiliated by one of my relatives during my yoga practice for wearing shorts. I never felt any such discrimination beyond my home and relatives. people outside were quite normal and human. The support of my mother and my strong will and determination - to never bow my head against those remarks from the 'so-called our own' - helped me come out of this."
A strong-willed young lady who found many like her at the SHEROES platform she says, "I came to know about it through social media. My journey with SHEROES is really remarkable as it helped me to come out of my anxieties. The beautiful people I met there and the various stories of women kept me motivating. It’s a platform where I can reach out to women from various communities, caste, creed, culture and states. This broadens the scope to know and acknowledge various issues, culture, socio-political condition, different life stories, and to share my thoughts and voice to various sections of people. I took a sabbatical from social media for some time, even SHEROES too. But when I made a comeback, SHEROES APP was the first thing I got back to! It means so much me!"
And her posts are a rage at the App! What's the story behind that Durba?
"Since childhood, I have always wanted to study fashion designing after school. The small town provides fewer scopes and opportunities, and my family couldn’t afford to admit me in
colleges that provide these courses. And till now that urge has remained deep within me. I always keep myself updated about fashion trends. Though I am preparing for the NET, at the same time planning to open up a YouTube channel," asserts Durba who is a ray of hope to all those who come from small towns with big dreams!
What more?! She also loves to Doodle. take a look at this image!
Durba smiles and details, "I had a great interest in painting in my childhood. I have the creativity and an artistic self within me. I started doodling two years back. My inspiration is one of my friends, and she is exceptionally good at this thing. Doodling makes me calm, helps increase my patience level and through this art form, I express my feelings and desires too. And sharing my work at SHEROES and getting genuine feedback has only made me better with time."
So what are your future goals Durba? She takes no time to respond on this, "Ma'am, as a young woman I would want to be a support to all those underprivileged and distressed women and work for them. I have seen my mother suffer and I know what it feels like. My father and his family had always been abusive, tortured (both physically and mentally) and humiliated my mother for years. We had faced extreme financial crisis, lack of moral support and social insecurities. I had also seen my so-called ‘relatives’ make a mockery of our condition. My brother and I stood by our mom and decided to be a family of three. Thus, at SHEROES I keep motivating other women to be strong. And beyond SHEROES I want to do awareness campaigns mostly in the rural areas and in schools, regarding women issues, about the law and order, about the scopes of having better education, motivate them to come forward and express who they are and their desires."
And she adds that with SHEROES having launched its App in Bangla Language, she has an added advantage now, to accomplish her mission, "The total population in WB is more than 9 crores (4th most populous state in India), among which 4.4 crores are female. Hence through SHEROES Bangla App, I can reach out to a lot of women. It can provide great scope and motivation to a larger section of talented women, as it is well known, Bengal has a rich cultural background, a lot of talents and has always come up with brainstorming ideas."
Such strong emotions and even stronger ideas for the future, but then you are so young. So who is Durba at heart, when she isn't playing a motivator? She laughs, "Durba is a very emotional, yet strong girl. She falls down only to rise like the Phoenix. She wants to become an influencer someday so that I can reach out to more people. Durba also wants to be a style icon, and style her Mom and gift her the best of life, since everything that was hers was taken away from her. Durba wants to travel the world like a free bird. That's it for now.” And she laughs again to wrap the interview with the following message.
"Always feel good about yourself, love yourself and think positive. Raise voice against patriarchy and fight for your rights. Be fit and live a healthy life. And above all support other women always, and don’t be jealous; learn instead. Remember we women all are very strong. Love to you all."
Don't forget to say "We love you too, Durba," in the comments below. So that was Durba Dey in an exclusive chat with me in our ongoing #MeetTheSheroes Series. You can follow her on SHEROES.