Our cook has a sweet little daughter called Rupa. Sometimes, she comes to our house with her mother. We like each other and I love hearing about her friends, her dance classes and what new she learnt in school. During one of the days, I saw her putting a lot of talcum powder on her face. I ignored this in the beginning thinking that, it may be one of her child fantasies. But, then after seeing it repeatedly for quite some time, I asked her “Rupa, why do you put so much of powder on your face?” She replied innocently, “Aunty, all my classmates call me Kali and tease me”. I was disappointed to hear this. First thing I asked her, if she has complained about this to her teacher. She said yes, but still some of the children do so.
If we reflect on this situation, it’s not about those children. It’s about their upbringing and their parents’ thought process. I thought for a moment and told Rupa that, if someone calls you Kali the next time, you say, “Yes, I am Kali, the goddess you pray”. Skin colour is still a challenge in our country but I never wanted this to affect an 8 year old girl who was still too young to understand this. And if I don’t give her confidence now, it might affect her future and I can’t let that happen.
I find it silly when people talk about colour. The colour of skin doesn’t matter. All that matters is our behaviour towards people and a person is much more than a skin colour. Now, women have achieved so much and it’s all because of their hard work, perseverance, positive attitude and a never die spirit. So, people stop judging us on the basis of our skin colour. We are beautiful in every way and can proudly say, “Yes, we are goddesses”!