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Sanjukta Basu

Writer, Photographer, Story Teller. Social Media Consultant. Feminist Scholar

Founder, Samyukta Media, Social Media and Digital Communication Consultant for NGOs. Writer, photographer, story teller, feminist scholar. Blogging since 2005 breaking the wall between private and public. Awarded TED Fellowship for my blogs and related community leadership.

Jerry Redfern via Getty Images

The Pointlessness Of Jungle Safaris

Human beings going on a jungle safari in a national park… what a ridiculous activity it is. I have been on quite a few of them myself and trust me I am not particularly proud. We love to create so much drama and suspense around the whole deal. We think of ourselves as great achievers if we manage to get a glimpse of the animal and feel utterly depressed if the mission fails.
24/08/2016 8:56 AM IST
Sanjukta Basu

The Lie Of ‘Candid' Wedding Photography In India

Even candid shots, such as for bridal make-up, are often not <em>actually</em> candid. Most are taken after the make-up is already complete; the touch of the make-up brush is only for effect. Compare this to some of my bridal make up shots and you will see they are not always "pretty", because the bride is still half-dressed, the skin is not yet perfect and so on.
10/07/2016 8:26 AM IST
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My Experiment To Stop Seeking Acceptance, Validation And Appreciation On Social Media

On a certain day I posted two things on Facebook, 1) A very sad feeling of being heartbroken and in need of a hug, 2) A stupid photo of me in a stupid hat. The hat got over 30 likes, but the sad post earned me a total of zero words of comfort. I was so frustrated I deleted the hat photo. People find it easier to cheer for pretentious, happy updates and feel totally clueless about what to do with your misery. And that's just so superficial it frustrates me.
18/06/2016 12:00 AM IST
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Dear Logical Indian, Motherhood Does Not Complete a Woman

Get logical. Motherhood doesn't complete a woman. Nothing does. Because you know what, a woman is not incomplete to begin with. She is born complete. She is complete because she exists. Because she was born a full human and is not waiting to be completed by a man, marriage or motherhood. These are mere personal choices a woman makes.
28/04/2016 8:11 AM IST
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Surge Pricing Is Unfair, Unethical And Unconstitutional

The surge prices charged by app-based cab services like Uber and Ola represent capitalism in its most brutal form. The message here is, "more power to the free market, leave no space for government's intervention, price regulation is an obstacle to growth, eventually leads to rationing, just let the demand and supply decide prices." So, let's apply surge pricing to hospitals. Limited beds, too many patients? Increase the price. What happens? The rich get the beds, the poor die.
22/04/2016 8:15 AM IST
Hindustan Times via Getty Images

So What If Malaika And Arbaaz Are Breaking Up? It's Good For Them!

A separation after two decades does not necessarily mean that the relationship was weak from the start and that the couple only figured it out now. I bet Malaika and Arbaaz had a true, loving and beautiful 18 years but with time things change. People change. Dreams, desires, expectations change. The best course then is to put to an end to a relationship that is getting stale and move on.
30/03/2016 8:15 AM IST

Yup, Indian Marriages Are Still Sacred – Rape And All

The answer given by Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi in Rajya Sabha on 10 March on the question of whether the government has plans to criminalize marital rape, is a word-to-word copy of the answer given by Minister of State for Home Affairs Haribhai Parathibhai Chaudhary in Rajya Sabha in April 2015. Essentially, the government is saying, "You are not allowed to rape strangers, but if you really need sex, go home and rape your wife."
12/03/2016 8:19 AM IST

Can You See The Gender Bias In Resurgent Rajasthan's Print Campaign?

Suppose we had a Rajasthani woman's face with a caption of "I am Rajasthan, I am ready". Would that be odd? Is it almost impossible to imagine that scenario? Perhaps yes. For one, how could they have the image of a woman, with her head held high looking straight at the camera, when the majority of Rajasthani women are duty-bound to remain submissive and behind the veil? Secondly, how would it do justice to the gravitas of the Resurgent Rajasthan mission?
06/01/2016 3:47 PM IST

Why Banning The Burqa Is A Step Towards Women's Liberation

This November, Switzerland followed in the footsteps of France and overwhelmingly voted to ban the burqa in the region of Ticino, instating a £6,500 fine for women who continued to wear this garment. As expected, accusations of Islamophobia have started flying thick and fast, and my fellow feminists will probably soon be writing editorials on Muslim women's right to choose. I beg to differ. I don't think that wearing a burqa is a viable choice at all.
24/12/2015 8:11 AM IST

Modi And The ‘Othering' Of Women

Modi's entire speech at the recent launch of three gold schemes was ridden with inherent gender biases and that's a shame. You don't expect casual banter from the nation's Prime Minister, you don't expect gendered language. But being conscious about using respectful language towards women is not on the priority list for Modi.
10/11/2015 8:14 AM IST
Sanjukta Basu

'Caravan' Magazine's Apology For Not Putting A Woman On The Cover For 5 Years Is Hogwash

<em>The Caravan</em> actually didn't have a woman on any of their covers ever. And don't presume that most covers had issue-based images. No, they mostly featured a personality. A male personality. Associate editor Supriya Nair makes a sad attempt at saving Caravan's face and renders a terrible apology for this gap... to say that in five years you couldn't find one woman figure worthy of the cover page, well that is just a dumb lie.
06/10/2015 8:10 AM IST
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Modern Indian Women's Aspirations To Balance Home And Work

Modern Indian women's aspirations are not to shed traditional gender roles but to acquire new un-gendered roles.So while women are working and perhaps taking higher position than their husbands, they are still cooking because that remains their domain and that is their expression of love and care. And men continue to stick to their traditional roles with no sense of urgency to share household responsibilities.
17/09/2015 1:47 PM IST
Essel Vision/YouTube

‘Jazbaa' Trailer Gets A Big F For Feminism

Feminism is the in-thing in Bollywood. Everybody wants to cash in on it. There was little doubt that Aishwarya Rai Bachchan's comeback film, too, would be a woman-oriented film. But you know what happens when you don't understand gender yet try to wash your hands in the flowing Ganga? You end up making a feminism faux pas. That's what I saw in the just released much-awaited trailer of <em>Jazbaa</em>.
27/08/2015 8:19 AM IST