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Turning 18 with HT: ‘Can’t stand anyone degrading women’

Shruti believes India is on the cusp of change but finds changing mindsets tough, particularly when it comes to gender equality

punjab Updated: Apr 23, 2018 09:33 IST
Yojana Yadav
Yojana Yadav
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Shruti Pathania, the head girl of Saint Soldier International School, Chandigarh, loves to read and wants to write a book on women during Partition. She believes in equal opportunities for women.(Karun Sharma/HT)

Shruti Pathania

Born on January 21, 2001

Badge of honour: Head girl, Saint Soldier International School, Sector 28 B, Chandigarh

What turning 18 means to me

Life is at a crossroads. School is over and the future uncertain. I’ll be turning a responsible adult. A lot of physical changes may be over but mentally I’m toughening up to take on the competition.

What I want to be and why

I want to be journalist after getting a law degree. All professions do justice to society but only journalism holds up the mirror to society. I like travelling and meeting people. I’d love to be at the spot to see an event as it unfolds and report news as it happens.

My idea of India

India is on the cusp of change. It is a developing country that has the potential to be developed. But it is difficult to change mindsets here. Gender discrimination exists everywhere, even in making career choices.

What makes me happy

Happiness is a choice. Seeing people around me makes me happy. So do good books. I like mysteries by John Green besides novels by Harper Lee.

What makes me angry

Gender discrimination. The government can only make policies and laws, it’s up to citizens to follow them.

Fear and fantasy

I avoid driving a two-wheeler whether it’s a bicycle or scooter.

I look forward to writing a book about women during Partition. I’m a feminist and can’t stand people degrading women.

Am I happy where I am

Yes, I’m excited I’m headed for college.

What money means to me

Money buys security, status and happiness to some extent. I won’t do anything illegal to get it. With hard work, I’ll ensure I’m financially independent and secure.

What makes me proud of India

People are accepting progressive change. They are gradually becoming open-minded.

Who I can’t live without

My sister Shreya, who is in Class 9. She listens to me and is understanding. She used to sit up with me till late in the night as I studied for the board exams.

What social media means to me

It is an empowering tool for instant information but it needs to be used in a balanced way.

What religion means to me

Religion isn’t important, community is. Faith is personal.

Change I want to see in Chandigarh

Better public transport system and maintenance, particularly of markets. Sectors 17, 19 and 22 need attention.

My role model and why

I’m inspired by my father, Inder Singh, and mother, Seema. My father is an electrical engineer and works in a private company in Panchkula. I look up to him for his patience and balanced approach. My mother is a homemaker. She is my biggest support and strength.

First Published: Apr 23, 2018 09:33 IST