When acid attack survivor Reshma Bano Qureshi walked the ramp at the recent New York Fashion Week, she attempted to change the perception of beauty. Her walk also sparked a debate on social media with users asking if the ramp is the best platform to create awareness about her cause. Another Indian acid attack survivor, Laxmi Aggarwal, recently walked the London ramp.
How much impact can a bespoke, controlled event like a fashion show have when it comes to promoting such causes? Some in the fashion fraternity believe that we need stronger measures to promote the cause. “We must make consistent efforts for the upliftment of these real-life heroes. (But) I am not sure if a fashion show is the best platform for this. A runway is about showing clothes,” says designer Nachiket Barve.
FDCI president Sunil Sethi, too, believes that one needs to be careful about how the cause is being highlighted. “We would like to support the cause, but how it is done will make all the difference,” he says.
However, designer Rina Dhaka believes it’s ‘the ideal way to showcase true beauty’. “With such efforts, acid attack survivors will get a better place in the society,” she says. Agrees photographer Rahul Saharan who did a fashion shoot with acid attack survivors two years ago. “Such efforts bring in a big change. It helps survivors feel confident. It also inspires others to be real life role models,” he says.
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