Keshi Gupta: The Most Resolute Social Changemaker of True Progress

Keshi Gupta
Keshi Gupta

“Be the change you wish to see in the world,” Mahatma Gandhi said, and we must accept that change is the only constant and respond to it by positively changing ourselves.

Otherwise, in our world’s constantly evolving modern era, negative elements abound, threatening to overpower and destroy us. Gender inequality, discrimination, suppression, oppression, and violence are the most significant factors contributing to this negativity, to the point where as women demand their right to equality, freedom, and dignity, crimes against them are on the rise.

Assault, abduction, rape, murder, and other heinous crimes could be seen as the perverse anti-social elements’ resistance to every positive change we have achieved thus far. There is a need for strong and united social action to eliminate this negativity, prevent such acts from occurring, and punish the criminals while providing dignified justice to the victims.

Keshi Gupta, a well-known Writer, Poet, and Social Activist, has dedicated herself completely to bringing about positive change in the form of justice for the affected individuals and their families.

Inspiring Saga of Positivity

Keshi, who has an empathetic nature, often wondered about social standards in this fast-paced modern age of developments and technologies. The standard of living has greatly improved, but human behaviour is disturbing when we see antisocial elements destroying the lives of women and the underprivileged sections of society.

Keshi began speaking out against various wrongdoings and social atrocities in her neighbourhood. She discovered a significant gap in social expectations and behaviour. She also resolved to effect change. However, the change cannot be implemented overnight. It takes precise steps to raise public awareness, lobby the government to enact stricter laws, and protect women, children, the elderly, and physically challenged people.

Penning the Social Movement

Keshi, a passionate writer, spoke out against various social crimes that were taking place. She is a fearless social activist who goes to great lengths to raise awareness about various crimes, injustices, and exploitation. She believes in fighting for justice for those in need.

Keshi has seven books published, six in Hindi and one in English poetry as an e-book. Poetry has appeared in various newspapers and magazines across India, and has been included in numerous anthologies and articles. She is involved with various social work organisations and non-governmental organisations (NGOs). She has collaborated with them on issues such as the environment, women’s empowerment, child education, medical camps, Swatch Bharat, and many others. Keshi worked as elected RWA president of Vinayak CGHS Dwarka, Elected Advisory Committee Member, and Vice President of MC.

Writing has been her childhood passion but her first book got published in 2019. Keshi expressed that “As it’s said everything comes your way as it’s destined. My mother used to be my inspiration. Keshi Gupta is my pen name whereas my real name is Dr Rakesh Kalsi. I wanted to be recognized by my parent’s name so I chose to write Keshi Gupta as my pen name.”

Keshi experienced different shades of life and penned down them in the form of poetries, articles, and short stories. Keshi’s books include

Hindi: Rooh ki Aawaaj, Rooh ka Nata, Pariprekshya – Samajik Jwalant Muddey, Corona kaal – lockdown aur samajik pehalu, Corona Kaal – lockdown aur samajik Pehalu (Dusari lahar), Zindagi ki Kahaniyan –Laghukatha Sangrah,

English: Shades of Love and Let me come out. Her readers showered their blessings on her and demanded that she should keep writing on different issues. Keshi’s books are available on Amazon, Google, and Kindle.

The Voice of Women

Society is modernizing and many women are breaking the norms and accomplishing never levels of personal and professional success. On the other side, certain heart-breaking and resentful events keep pulling their achievements down. The many incidents of rape where society questions the character of girls, and women who are already victimized.

Keshi questions this hypocrisy where we say we respect women on one hand and on the other blame them even when they are the victims. Keshi asks certain direct questions, “Where are these so-called modern people when an innocent woman is publicly insulted? How have we progressed as a modern society of empowered women, when the public group humiliates the rape victim in the broad daylight? Isn’t there any sensitive or responsible citizen who can come forward and stop this wrong from happening?

The Ankita Murder Case raises concerns about women’s safety in the workplace. When a young 19-year-old receptionist, Ankita Bhandari, was murdered by Uttarakhand Hotel owner Pulkit Arya and hotel manager Saurabh Bhaskar, the entire nation was shaken. Pulkit is the son of a prominent political leader who used his influence to demolish the hotel the next day on the grounds that it was an unauthorised structure.

The public outpouring of rage against this crime spread from Uttrakhand to the entire country. When Ankita Bhandari, a young teenager, went missing on September 18, the investigations and evidence recovered, such as WhatsApp chats between Ankita and a friend, show that the man was allegedly trying to push her into prostitution. On Saturday, her body was discovered. Ankita died as a result of drowning, according to the postmortem report. She also suffered from blunt force injuries.

Parts of the resort, including Ankita Bhandari’s murder site, were demolished on the orders of Pushkar Singh Dhami, the state chief minister, on Friday night, September 23rd, claiming that they were built illegally. The remainder of the parts were set on fire by unidentified individuals in the morning. Clearly, Ankita Bhandari’s parents claimed that the property was demolished in order to destroy evidence.

This case raises concerns about sexual harassment in the workplace. Women have the right to work in an environment that is safe, secure, and free of discrimination and violence. In December 2013, the Indian Parliament passed the Sexual Harassment of Women in the Workplace Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal Act 2013. The act’s primary goal is to ensure that women feel safe at work. The employer is required by law to provide a safe working environment for women. The implementation of this law begins with the following few major actions.

  • Provide a safe workplace environment, which shall also include safety from an outsider coming into contact at the workplace.
  • Constitute internal committee, mandatory declaration of the name and contact details of members of the internal committee.
  • Organize and hold orientation programs for IC members and monitor timely submission after a report by IC to the government.
  • Drive awareness campaigns through virtual as well as offline training for existing employees and new joiners.

But the law will work only if there is a proper system of implementation of that law. So there must be a regular check and audit of all the corporate as well government sectors in such matters. Above and beyond all women must be aware of their rights and the laws devised to protect them. They must take a stand and need to raise their voices from time to time for themselves.

Keshi believes that leniency in our law has been responsible for such heinous crimes being committed. “These incidents highlight the dual mentality and hypocrisy prevailing in our society,” she says.

Tech-Empowered Citizens

Women in the modern world are expected to be a mother, daughters, wives, corporate executives, etc. at the same time and rush from one end to another in this highly balancing act of their lives. Women often have to work extra hours due to the demanding work pressures, making it imperative for women to work and travel late. Keshi feels the need for implementing technological applications for better and improved safety.

She informs, “Almost everyone today uses a smartphone. The government has developed some useful mobile apps like BuddyCop, Stipator, SOS Stay Safe, Bachaao, YatraMiTR, Mother’s World, Life 365 Family Locator, Nine Minutes, and many others. We must make more and more women aware of this so that they can use technology effectively for their own safety and security.”

Surmounting Social Challenges

Keshi identified the sluggish and insensitive approach of society in many of these incidents. People these days have become so hard and indifferent that they have lost empathy for others due to their own busy lifestyles. Keshi feels like shaking and waking up society to look up and identify the prevailing issues. People these days need to be inspired and motivated to take cognizance and protest actively. Keshi reveals that her garnering of support and acceptance of women’s safety in the workplace norms had been slow.

The Guiding Wisdom Star

In her advice to young professionals, Keshi says, “Be brave and voice your protest about personal, professional, and social crimes. Understand the laws and gather the support of the people to collectively go forward and register complaints to seek justice. If you really want to bring in the expected change in the society, then let yourself begin the change from you.”

Keshi strongly believes, “We the citizen of this country must voice the social crimes and atrocities against women.” Women have made great progress in various fields. In such a competitive environment, mature and responsible men need to act appropriately and take care of the safety of women.

Towards a Truly Progressive Future

When probed about her plans for the future, Keshi reflects with a confident smile at how far she has come, “However, there is a lot more to be done,” she says. According to her women should work in preparedness, keeping close contacts like relatives, friends, and colleagues in a close loop. They should be connected always before leaving and after reaching a particular location. Keep a track of strangers while travelling in public transportation or cabs. Law enforcement should be strictly implemented with heavy punishments inflicted on criminals.

Well-deserved Recognitions

Keshi has been recognized and honoured with numerous awards:

  • Felicitated at different platforms for her work as a Writer and Social Activist.
  • Awarded with Surya Kant Tripathi Nirala award for her book “Rooh ki Aawaaz” in 2019 by Sarv Bhasha Trust.
  • Rahbar-e-Majloom, a social activist award in 2019 at the constitution club by NSHA and RBM.
  • Utkrusht Wagheshwari Samman, G Town Award, Fox Clue Prime Women Award.
  • Awarded with an Honorary Doctorate from WHRPC and Literary Coronal Title from the Story Mirror.

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