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Savitri’s Sisters at Azaadi Kooch

Crew: Abhishek Indrekar, Imran Khan,  Nakul Singh Sawhney

One year after the public flogging of Dalits at Una in Gujarat, a call was given for the ‘Azadi Kooch’ yatra (march). The yatra traveled through several towns and villages of Mehsana and Banaskantha districts of the state. The main demand being the handing over of land which was allocated to Dalits on paper but has been illegally occupied by people from dominant castes for several years.

During the yatra, a whole range of other socio-political-economic issues were raised. The issue of gender justice being among the most prominent. ‘Savitri’s Sisters at Azadi Kooch’ attempts to look at two emerging Dalit women leaders, Laxmiben and Madhuben in the yatra. The film traces them through the march, their struggles to reclaim the land that rightfully belong to Dalits, along with an internal struggle within the movement to ensure that gender justice becomes an inalienable aspect of the march as also the larger movement against caste and capitalist exploitation.

As they assert their agency as women, Laxmiben and Madhuben, in the process of discovering a world outside the domestic sphere, they also hope to inspire many other Dalit women to join them in their journey towards an egalitarian society.

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