Remembering Women's Rights Activist Kamla Bhasin With Her Thought-Provoking Quotes

Never hesitant to question the power and the patriarchy, here are few quotes by the activist that will remain entrenched in our hearts forever

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Kamla Bhasin quotes: Women's rights activist, author and poet Kamla Bhasin, passed away early morning on Saturday, September 25. She had been diagnosed with cancer some months ago. As soon as the news of her passing broke, social media users have been sharing thought-provoking quotes and poems of the activist in an attempt to celebrate her life and to remember her legacy.

Kamla Bhasin was not only known for her activism but also for powerful statements and poems that enthralled even the readers of the digital age. She began her work for the empowerment of the rural and urban poor in 1972. Since then she has worked with numerous organisations and was one of the founding members of Sangat- A South AsianFeminist Network and also worked with JAGORI- Women's Resource and Training Centre in New Delhi as well as Jagori Grameen in Himachal Pradesh.

Never hesitant to question the power and the patriarchy, here are few quotes by the activist that will remain entrenched in our hearts forever:

"Is the country free? If daughters are disappointed in the country, they are unhappy, Put your hand on your heart and say is the country free?" Bhasin questioned the gender-based stereotypes prevalent in India, which force women to compromise with every possible thing that could bring them happiness- expression of agency, education, financial independence, etc., during an interview with SheThePeople.

Bhasin further went on to question the prevalence of political agenda in every space of our society, saying, "Politics in every such group which has more than two people, where resources are divided, where one needs to take decisions and there is division in work, politics is there."

According to Bhasin vested political interests were the reason why large scale social changes were so difficult to achieve as there were people gained from divisiveness. "Where there is politics and people who want to maintain status quo, for the violence is a tool."

While participating in an event organised by the students of Delhi University, Bhasin said that it is wrong to say that feminism is an urban phenomenon. "All Major women's movements in the history of the world were initiated by rural women. The land rights movement, the Chipko movement are all outcomes of the hard work put in by women from villages," she reasoned.


During the same interaction, Bhasin had also spoken about how men too are the victims of patriarchy and how it negatively shaped their behaviour. "Most of the violence inflicted on people is by men. They feel it is masculine to hide their emotions and become violent. Patriarchy dehumanises men. It affects them as much as women."

However patriarchy isn't exclusively prevalent in men, women too fall prey to its views, and Bhasin knew that very well. “I know enough women who are totally patriarchal, who are totally anti-women: who do nasty things to other women, and I have known men who have worked for women’s rights their whole life," said, further adding that feminism is not biological: feminism is an ideology”

Suggested reading: 

Kamla Bhasin Passes Away: 10 Things To Know About The Women’s Rights Activist

Women’s Rights Activist Kamla Bhasin Passes Away


Myths About Feminism That Are Just Not True

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