Television actor Anjan Shrivastava has lent a soothing touch to Mumbai's sex workers, on the occasion of the sibling festival of 'Raksha Bandhan'.
Shrivastava visited hundreds of commercial sex workers, giving them a sense of belonging. The tradition of women tying 'Rakhis' or sacred threads on their brothers' wrists and wishing them prosperity and happiness, while the latter pledges to protect their sisters' honour, was a cherished experience for the sex workers.
Sex workers were visibly excited about tying the sacred thread on Shrivastava. "Nobody cares for women like us. Today, he (actor Anjan Shrivastava) came and we tied Rakhi to him, it felt great. We lose touch with our families once we enter this trade," said Hajra Shah, a sex worker.
The Social Activities Integration (SAI), a self-help group, organised the event. Shrivastava also gave a lecture to the women on HIV/AIDS and safe sex practices.
"They should get our support. We need to help such organisations (NGOs) to work and grow," Shrivastava said.
Sex workers lead extremely pathetic and exploited lives. They are also amongst the highest risk group for sexually transmitted diseases like HIV/AIDS.
In Meerut, about 600 students and 40 teachers of the Shanti Niketan Vidyapeeth made a gigantic Rakhi (wristband) measuring 270 feet.
It took an hour and forty-seven minutes to make the Rakhi. The entire exercise was aimed at highlighting unacceptable practices like dowry, female foeticide and infanticide.
The school authorities are trying to get their feat acknowledged by the Guinness Book of World Records and the Limca Book of Records.
'Raksha Bandhan' is being celebrated across the country today.