Reshma Qureshi is an acid attack survivor who is committed to helping many others. After being involved with NGO ‘Make Love Not Scars’ and hosting a video series ’Beauty Tips By Reshma’, where in the end she made an appeal to stop acid attacks, Qureshi is now moving on to a bigger platform, the New York Fashion Week. Make Love Not Scars has just announced her confirmation to walk the ramp for FTL MODA in collaboration with Global Disability Inclusion in September.
“Models the world over count their careers made once they have walked the renowned New York Fashion Week ramp, these women are perfect from every angle. The fact that Reshma will be joining their league this year will have society questioning their idea of “perfect”. It will start a much- needed dialogue on what beauty should be judged by and I’m hoping the only answer to that will be courage and strength,” said Ria Sharma, Founder of Make Love Not Scars in a statement in a press release.
With this effort, FTL MODA is starting a new campaign to bring women who have suffered back into the mainstream.
“It has been a journey of discovery that led us to Make Love Not Scars, a well recognized organization supporting survivors of acid attacks in India. We want to give a voice to these amazing women, who have been silently suffering, hiding, and too often depriving themselves of the opportunity to declare how cruelly they have been attacked. FTL MODA and Global Disability Inclusion are activating a powerful movement called #TakeBeautyBack, in partnership with Fashion Week Online” said IlariaNiccolini, Producer of FTL Moda about the collaboration and the initiative.
Reshma’s beauty tips videos where she taught viewers the basics of how to apply lipstick or kohl became quite popular. At the end she would appeal to stop the sale of acid in the country. She became the global face of the campaign #EndAcidAttackSale after the video series. It won many awards both nationally and internationally including the prestigious Cannes Lion (Gold Lion in Film),which was won by an Indian campaign after 7 years.
Reshma is one of those hundreds of victims of acid attack that are reported from India every year. She was attacked by her own brother-in-law and his friend who pinned her down and threw acid on her face, reportedly because of her beauty and popularity. Reshma showed immense courage in going ahead to file the case against her relative and his friend. Both the perpetrator and his friend were arrested, although the latter was let off on bail as he was a juvenile.
When the government ruled the case in her favour, she did not get compensation for months, because of which her getting medical aid was delayed. In 2015, she came in touch with Make Love Not Scars, and has been actively fighting ostracism by the society for acid attack survivors. She is very open about her situation and works so that watching her, others like her can also find their voice.
Feature Image Credit: Indianexpress.com