Lucknow: Babbar promises to launch stir to save Sheroes Cafe

State Congress chief Raj Babbar on Monday visited the Sheroes Hangout Cafe in Gomti Nagar to express solidarity with the acid attack survivors who are fighting hard to prevent a possible shutdown of the café.
UP Congress chief Raj Babbar at the Sheroes Cafe to express solidarity with acid attack survivors in Lucknow.(HT Photo)
UP Congress chief Raj Babbar at the Sheroes Cafe to express solidarity with acid attack survivors in Lucknow.(HT Photo)
Published on Oct 02, 2018 03:39 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Lucknow | By, Lucknow

State Congress chief Raj Babbar on Monday visited the Sheroes Hangout Cafe in Gomti Nagar to express solidarity with the acid attack survivors who are fighting hard to prevent a possible shutdown of the café.

Babbar assured the acid attack survivors that he would launch a massive agitation and fight for their cause.

He said, “We will raise the issue both in New Delhi and in Lucknow (and speak up) against the insensitive action of the BJP government that is determined to take this café away from acid attack survivors, who earn a livelihood by working here.”

He said, “Chief minister Yogi Adityanath should visit this café to see their struggle. If he is too busy, I can take these acid attack survivors to his office or whichever place he suggests. These girls should not be disturbed from this place.”

The Uttar Pradesh Mahila Kalyan Nigam, in its letter dated September 22, had said that it had decided to shut down the café. The letter mentioned that the state monitoring committee found “no reason to run the unit”.

He said it was sad that the possibility of the shutdown had come a time when several acid attack survivors had made a mark at this café and it had become the source of their livelihood. He also asked for a cup of tea.

Acid attack survivor Anshu Rajput and others thanked the state Congress chief for his support.

“It was nice that at a time when the state government has turned blind eye to our cause, he came out in our support,” said Anshu. Babbar posed with the girls before leaving the café.

Over 8,000 citizens have signed an online petition to drum up support for preventing the possible shutdown of the café in Lucknow. Acid attack survivor Anshu Rajput who works at the café, launched the petition in which she has sought chief minister Yogi Aditynath’s intervention in preventing the cafe’s closure.

“The job of 12 acid attack survivors, who work here, is at stake. In addition, 25 other survivors will also be adversely impacted in terms of treatment and rehabilitation,” she said. The UP Mahila Kalyan Nigam said survivors working at the unit will be provided training in cooperation with the National Skill Development Corporation and the State Resource Centre for Women, to ensure that they could continue earning their livelihood.

In the letter, the corporation also instructed the Chhanv Foundation that runs Sheroes to hand over all equipment and vacate the café by September 29. In response, the foundation moved a petition in court and got relief of three weeks.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Rajeev Mullick is a Special Correspondent, he writes on education, telecom and heads city bureau at Lucknow. Love travelling

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