November 1, 2017
Actress Vidya Balan has associated with TOIs
#NoConditionsApply campaign that helps to raise awareness about issues
concerning gender equality across all opportunities, celebrations and ambitions.
Driving home the message that "Festivals should be inclusive celebration", a short film on inclusive Shindoor Khela was launched on Wednesday that TOI hosted under the campaign of #NoConditionsApply.
Contextualising to Durga Puja, which is a mega celebration of homecoming of Shakti (Goddess Durga) to her maternal home with her sons and daughters, the campaign calls for an all-inclusive community celebration.
Celebrated as a community gathering on the last day of Durga Pujo (Dashami), Shindoor Khela is a tradition that has been celebrated by married women for years.
Traditionally children and unmarried girls are a part of this social celebration; however the rest of the sisterhood viz. widows, divorcees, transgenders, single moms etc. looks on uninvited.
As a part of the campaign, TOI joined hands with Tridhara Sammilani - a Durga Puja organiser in Kolkata - to host an all-inclusive Shindoor Khela.
All women played Shindoor Khela together - married, widow, transgender, lesbian, single mother, divorced.
This film captures the journey to this inclusive celebration - that brings humanity closure.
The on-ground celebration was recorded in a short documentary format, which launched on Wednesday with the support of Vidya, actress Rituparna Sengupta and LGBT activist Laxmi Narayan Tripathi.
The short documentary sheds light on the way in which we can help our own people feel happy and together, it also features women who were a part of the celebrations, and showcases their joy to be included.
Vidya said in a statement: "I am happy to be associated with TOI's #NoConditionsApply campaign as it helps spread the message of social inclusion in the country. Women's rights towards education, professional growth and societal expectations have evolved over the years but we still hold on to some traditions."
"It is important for women across the country to come together and support their own gender and extend this campaign further by sharing the Shindoor Khela short documentary."