Sampat Pal’s Pink Gang

One half of our country has long been conceded to the shackles of prejudice and exploitation by the other half of our country. And it goes without saying that women have mastered themselves in the rat race of today’s world. In every corner of this world, there are women fighting for their rights so that they may be able to promise a better future to their off springs. One such example of a revolutionary fight is the “Pink Gang” of Bundelkhand , spear-headed by Sampat Pal, a simple village maiden who has seen the exploitation of the women folk of her village for the past four decades. Her gang has inspired the ladies of Uttar Pradesh and other neighboring state women to fight for a better position in this society. It already has inspired a “blue gang” in Kanpur villages, a “red gang” in Farrukhabad and many others.

The story of Sampat dates back to when she was at a tender age of 12. When she got married, as a child maiden she observed the brutalization of the women-folk of her village and continuously fought her tears. There was a sense of fear instilled in her mind for years which she did not dare to voice against all those malpractioners of the village. One day, finally, when a neighbor’s newly wedded daughter-in-law was thrashed out of the village for no reason, she collected her six other friends and held lathi-charge against the ruthless brutes. This marked the initiation of a long wanted change in the village. However, this was not the end to all woes. Sampat, along with her husband, was forced out of the village for breaking the decorum of the village, but she did not easily give up the burning desire in her mind and she started to spread awareness in other villages of Bundelkhand about her newly constructed Pink Gang. Soon after, an order of about 200 pink saris was made and the gang members took the morcha forward. The rest is history in the golden chapter of women empowerment of India. Sampat’s gang has fought for many women whose FIRs against their own family members were not lodged in the local police stations.

Sampat Pal has recently been invited to France for her noble cause of spreading the fire of women’s empowerment across the villages of Uttar Pradesh. She has also completed her autobiography Me Sampat Pal – The Head of The Pink Sari. She is a living example of the revolutionary spirit of women in India and across the world. I salute her.

Akriti Rastogi

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