Stories written by Mehru Jaffer
Mehru Jaffer is an Indian journalist based in Vienna, Austria. She is the author of ‘The Book of Muhammad’, published by Penguin. She writes on gender issues and the role of religion and Islam in contemporary society.
India’s new Chief Justice, Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, has a significant challenge ahead – as activists and minorities remain hopeful that he will remain true to his legacy of delivering judgments that enshrined the Constitution, especially on personal liberty.
On the eve of India’s 76th Independence Day, the president of the country, Droupadi Murmu, received a letter signed by 102 international writers, including authors from India and the Indian diaspora expressing “grave concerns about the rapidly worsening situation for human rights” and calling for the release of imprisoned writers and “dissident and critical voices”.
Romeo is a bad word in Uttar Pradesh (UP), India's largest province with nearly 25 million people.
While the name symbolises love, various shows of affection and love between women and men can be seen as a criminal offence in UP. For their safety, women are advised not to be seen cosying up with their lovers, especially in public places – because the state police department’s anti-Romeo squads could arrest them.
For over two decades, Nina tossed around like a leaf in a storm. While a teenager, she was lured into the sex trade, and pimps kept a huge chunk of the money that she earned as a sex slave. Nina was often bruised. Once, she refused sex with a man who did not want to use a condom. He beat her so severely that she had found it difficult to breathe.
When Farah’s 16-year-old son began to disappear for several nights a week without saying where he went, she was naturally worried. After he returned one day and shattered the television screen in their Peshawar home, the mother of three decided it was time to quit her job as a teacher and to find out what was making her youngest child so angry.
Despite being at the forefront of sweeping changes taking place in the country, the lives of the majority of Yemeni women are restricted to early marriage, motherhood and serving husbands, according to a new study by Women Without Borders (WWB), a Vienna based public relations and advocacy platform for women’s voices around the world.
Kiren Kaur, 37, has come to terms with HIV she contracted from her husband in 1997. The HIV positive status, per se, is not difficult to deal with. But dealing with the stigma that comes with it is an excruciating experience.
Anti-death penalty activists meeting in the Austrian capital to discuss the eighth quinquennial report of the United Nations Secretary-General have hailed a worldwide trend towards total and universal abolition of capital punishment.
”For three months I was in tears, receiving 50 clients a day. I lost sense of time. I tried to commit suicide...in the room next door a girl did commit suicide. In the morning her body was taken away and another girl put in the same room, to do the same job!”