Breaking all odds, Manipur’s Nazima Bibi recently became the state’s first Muslim female candidate when he decided to join Irom Sharmila’s Peoples Resurgence and Justice Alliance (PRJA) party to contest elections.
Bibi’s decision though has not been welcomed by all, and the ‘maulavis’ or the Muslim clerics in her village have now issued a fatwa in her name.
They have also threatened of denying her a ‘kabr’ or grave if she contests these assembly polls.
Though Bibi, despite the death threats, has said that she just doesn’t care whether she’ll get a final resting place or not, as she throughout her life has defied odds and fought for her rights.
She was the only girl in her class in school and was the first girl in her family to complete her Xth exams despite the taunts and harassment that she faced in her school.
Despite finishing Xth she was forced to give up and marry as soon as she completed her boards.
She though ran away from home than stay married a man that she had only met twice and turned out to be abusive.
She walked out on her husband 6 months after their forced marriage and she showed immanence courage by doing so.
After her divorce was finalized, Bibi initiated an economic independence programme for women and set up an thrift fund called ‘cheng marup’, where she became actively involved in helping women and advocating about women’s’ rights.
Since then she has not looked back and despite the 2006 fatwa, which accused her of “provoking the women in her village”, and banned her and her family from social functions and local shops, she continued her fight.
Nazima is now set to contest election from Manipur’s Wagbai area in Thoubal district, where she plans to fight alongside Irom who has now decided to fight her own battle against AFSPA with a new strategy.