She is Reshma Bano Quereshi, an 18 year old who is fond of make-up and fashion like every other girl. She has recently come up with a YouTube video that gives lipstick tips. In a perky way she demonstrates how to exfoliate the lips to get rid of dead cells and apply a lip balm before outlining it with a lip liner. Finally she applies the red lipstick.
If you take a closer look you will see sadness but only in her right eye for the left eye does not exist anymore. Her face is completely covered in scars. You probably wonder what happened to her.
On an awful day in 2014, Reshma’s brother-in-law attacked her with concentrated sulphuric acid. After numerous surgeries and treatment, Reshma was left with a permanently damaged left eye and an infected right eye. She also suffered severe disfigurement and burns and would require more surgeries for a complete recovery.
In this video ‘Beauty Tips by Reshma’, Reshma has teamed up with an NGO “Make Love Not Scars” that aids and supports many of such acid attack survivors in India. The idea behind the video is to raise awareness about the easy availability of acid in India that causes severe damage to the skin and health of such young women after an attack. Towards the end of the video, Reshma also asks the viewer to sign the petition to end the sale of acid in the country once and for all.
In India, there is at least one acid attack every day. The number of reported acid attacks in 2014 surpassed five times the previous year. This is believed to be an outcome of the lack of implementation of proper laws supporting the victims and harsher penalties for the culprits.
Another reason that triggers the occurrence of such horrendous crimes is the availability of hydrochloric, sulphuric and nitric acid. Though the Supreme Court has made it tougher to obtain these corrosive liquids, it is commonly used as a toilet cleaning agent and is neatly sold in cleaning fluids.
However through Reshma’s video Make Love Not Scars aims to bring an end to this practice. All you need to do in sign the online petition addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In two days it has already received over 1000 signatories. The NGO will head towards the prime minister’s office once it achieves 25000 signatories.
If you can handle Reshma’s disfigurement and relate to her to story go ahead, sign the petition and end the sale of acid in India.