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She Heroes of Sheroes Café.

Anand Pillai Thursday, October 5, 2023
She Heroes of Sheroes Café.

The old black man, dressed in loose brown Arabic robe, walked away sluggishly. My Wife Lekshmi slowly closed the glass window of the car. I asked her.

“We have several of these wiping clothes in our kitchen cabinet, still why did you buy them? “

That old man was standing in the scorching heat and selling this. I bought it only out of compassion. – She replied.

You shall give him money. I am only against emotional buying. In business world we say, there is no charity in business and there should not be any business in charity.

The traffic light showed green and the car speeded away.

As a person working in the food sector of Kuwait for the past few decades, I have been a curious observer of the emerging trends within food industry. Wherever I go, I make it a point to check out popular restaurants in that city. Sheroes Hangout café is a unique café concept run by acid attack victims. Chhavan foundation, which is a non-profit organization in India, which is working for the rehabilitation of acid attack victims, runs this café. I found this concept interesting. We still live in a world where beauty is mostly defined only in terms of physical features. Even after completing their treatment, victims of acid attack may find it difficult to be in a regular job due to their disfigured faces. Therefore, I felt this café is doing something that is very much needed.

Last week I was in Delhi and had a meeting in Noida on the following day. I searched on Google and found out that this place is open by early morning. But when I reached the venue, which is located inside a stadium complex, I found the hangout café is closed. A friendly watchman there informed me that they have recently opened a Kiosk near the Gate no 4 and that place is serving breakfast. Kiosk and a juice stall adjacent to each other are maned by two gentlemen. I ordered a Peri Peri Paneer burger and a glass of juice. I finished my food, paid my bill and was about to leave that place. That is when I saw Kajol, an acid attack victim. She took a glass of juice and sat next to my table.

A look at her face instantly revealed the intensity of the attack. There are scares all over her face. Left eye has been completely damaged. In place of the mouth, there seems to be hole, exposing her teeth. Both hands where severely burnt and there remained the marks of rotten away flesh.

I initiated a conversation with her, but her voice was too feeble to understand. I perceived that her ability to speak is also largely affected. I had to listen intently to every word. I fathom what she might have undergone after the attack and how she would ever overcome this.

She is 18 years old and lives in a village where her parents are farmers. The attack had happened in less than an year ago and she is still undergoing treatment. It seems that the attacker has been approaching her, forcing her brother to intervene. Then this attack happened as a revenge.

What happened to the guy who threw acid on you?

Case and Jail are 2 words that I could pick up from her replay.

Kajol further said that her treatment is still going on and she is in Delhi for that. She is getting free food, accommodation and medical treatment from Chhavan foundation.

No sooner we finished our talk, she wrapped her Dupatta around her head, said good bye to me and walked way. As she waked away through the stadium gate, I wished there wouldn’t be any other acid victim.

Did I change my opinion about mixing charity with business? Nevertheless, I will definitely support Chhavan foundation. Whether you want to do that or not, I leave it up to your conscience.


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Express your comment on this article

 
Annadatha V Murali Manohar
Sunday, October 15, 2023
Great message and great experience narrated in a simple words

Appreciate your gesture to understand people and their feelings.

Great Anand Pillai ji. Pranams

Mathew Joshua
Thursday, October 5, 2023
“Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more. We will support ❤️

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