The Girls Who Clean Bold Their Fear And Sent It Back To Pavilion

Shahbad Diary, one of the most infamous places in Delhi for its crime rate was the place where people feared to walk alone. Everyday there were cases of molestation, rape, assaults etc. In 2016 nearly 107 kids went missing from Shahbad Dairy. The girls living nearby lived in terror within every inch of their lives. But for how long they could have confined themselves? They needed something to empower them and make them believe in their strengths. ‘Cricket’ played the role of that something in their lives and pulled them out of that hell hole.

Terror was deep rooted

Shahbad Diary girls were so terrified that they didn’t even eat meals after 03:00 pm to avoid walking to communal toilets. The terror was so deep rooted that people had given up hope for better and just lived with it. A very powerful force was required to uproot this terror from their hearts once and for all. That’s when Saksham, an NGO intervened and did what was necessary to put an end to this terror and also fueled the girls with confidence.

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(A regular day at Shahbad Diary)

Dairy has always had a difficult atmosphere. You don’t see that many girls out on the streets. Even when they go out, boys harass them,” says Kavita Mahesh, the captain of girl’s team.

What this intervention brought?

Saksham introduced extra-curricular activities for girls, cricket was one among these. Although their families disapproved but the girls responded to cricket really well and showed skills, they never knew they had. Initially only three sisters Kavita, Chanchal, and Champa Mahesh participated but as this revolution grew more girls left behind fear at their homes to practice and perfect their sport.  

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(The fearless girls of Shahbad Diary)

The thing I love about sportspersons is that they don’t walk with trepidation. They walk with confidence so that the person in front of you knows that you have the courage and strength to fight. I believe in myself now. I’m not scared of walking around anymore,” says Kavita.

Shaping and polishing talents

Kavita was also selected for the under 19 Delhi team last September. Not just Kavita but every girl of Shahbad Diary has their own story to tell. So filmmakers Yasmin and Fazal Kidwai have decided to make a short documentary named ‘A Sticky Wicket’ on their journey and triumphs. 

They were given this opportunity to play and it’s amazing to see how they have grabbed it with both hands. Being in a team where they have each other’s backs has empowered them both physically and mentally,” says Yasmin Kidwai.

Their story is a very beautiful message that sport is not just a physical activity but can also empower us to fight our inner fears and bring out the best in us.

pic courtesy: pic-1, pic-2;

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