Last week Reshma Quereshi’s video titled ‘Beauty Tips by Reshma’ hot the headlines. The video was nothing less than a simple and cheeky tutorial that guides viewers how to apply red lipstick. A smartly dressed Reshma looks into the camera and confidently says her lines without the slightest error, like a professional. The one minute video became an instant hit on social media, gaining more than 10,000 likes on YouTube in just two days!
It’s only at the end that one realises that the video isn’t a mere ‘beauty vlog.’ Reshma politely draws attention to the fact that in India a bottle of corrosive acid is easily available as a tube of red lipstick. A bottle of acid (as little as 20 ml) could ruin the body and life of a woman in the same time a lipstick would beautify her. Now you could possibly imagine the plight of women in India who are susceptible to acid violence. Brace yourself – Reshma is one of them.
What started off as a casual visit resulted in a disaster that changed her life forever. In 2014 Reshma with her sister and friends were visiting a town in North India when her brother-in-law with the aid of two goons attacked them. At her sister’s plea, Reshma ran to her rescue only to be pinned down by the assailants. Finally they poured sulphuric acid on her pretty face.
Like every other acid attack victim, Reshma went through numerous surgeries. When the government and other authorities turned their back on her an NGO, Make Love Not Scars, came to her rescue. With aim to support young women like Reshma, the NGO raised funds through crowd funding campaigns to pay the cost of her surgeries. Doctors have said that she would need more surgeries and better treatment for a complete recovery.
At one end Reshma is living a life without a face and at the other her culprits have managed to walk free.