Indian activists 2022: find out

The list of Indian Women Activists 2022 is endless with the names of countless women who stood up for their rights and those of others despite fear of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and countless days in jail. They are women who have spoken about the lives of others and are actively working for the benefit of a community of women and others.

For generations, women have taken part in protests and contributed to the resounding sound of slogans. Very often their political space has been snatched away by men and their voices have gone unseen, but their spirits and struggles have maintained vigor and fire. Whether it is women’s rights or human rights or protesting against the powerful domination of the state, women have been at the forefront.

Filmmaker and historian Uma Chakravarti, who is also involved in activism, makes films about women who were politically active and ended up going to prison. She said it is important for us to recognize the stories of these women and make them public. Because men can talk about their involvement, but it is important to give women a voice as well. Chakravarti had decided to make a film about women who go to prison for their political cause. She wasn’t going to do the men’s story because they tell their own stories, not the women.


Suggested Reading: Historian and Filmmaker Uma Chakravarti Explains Why It’s Important to Show History Visually


Indian activists 2022

Sudha Bharadwaj

Sudha Bharadwaj’s bail plea

Popularly known as a people’s advocate, she was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1961. She was part of many political movements at Jawaharlal Nehru University, where she spent her early years with her mother Krishna Bhardwaj, who was an economist. She has spent over three decades working with marginalized sections of the country, particularly in Chhattisgarh. Through her legal work, she defended workers’ rights. She was recently released on bail in the Elgar Parishad case where she was arrested along with activists like Varavara Rai and the late Stan Swamy among others.

Natacha Narwal

She is a student and women’s rights activist who is one of the founding members of the group of female students and alumni of Delhi, Pinjra Tod. The purpose of the group was to fight against oppressive forces and all restrictions placed on female students, among other issues. She was arrested in 2020 for allegedly taking part in a “premeditated conspiracy” during the North East Delhi riots which took place in February 2020. She protested against the Citizenship Act, which if put in place implemented, would render thousands of people homeless in India.

Karuna Nundy

She is an Advocate in the Supreme Court of India and is also an international human rights lawyer. She represents and acts as legal advisor to governments, the United Nations and civil societies. She is known to fight for women in court and is popular for her stance on marital rape laws in India. She was one of TIME’s 100 most influential people for 2022.

Shehla Rachid

Indian Women Activists 2022, Shehla Rashid Challenges Section 370

Don’t Let My Arrest Divert Your Attention: Shehla Rashid on Sedition | Photo: by The Quint

She is an Indian student human rights activist pursuing her PhD at Jawaharlal Nehru University. She served as the Vice President of the JNU Students’ Union from 2015 to 2016 and a member of the All India Students Association. She spoke about the plight of minors who were detained awaiting trial and was also part of the Occupy UGC movement. In 2019, she tweeted that Kashmiri girls were trapped in a hostel in Dehra Dun, a post in which Uttarakhand police filed an FIR against Rashid.

Aruna Roy

She is one of the most prominent activists, who served as a civil servant from 1968 to 1975. She resigned from her position as IAS and started working for the welfare of the rural poor in Rajasthan. She also formed the MKSS Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan in 1990, which played an important role in advocating for the Right to Information Act, which was passed in 2005. She is also part of the National Women’s Federation Indians and was named in the TIME 100 Influencers for 2011.