Meet 75-year-old 'front row' protester at Jamia Millia Islamia University
New Delhi: She is 75 and yet the most punctual one among the protesters at Jamia Millia Islamia university combing young and old. Mashawari, a resident of Jamia Nagar's Joga Bai never missed a spot in the front row of protesters since the day it started. A nylon rope separates her from the stage. Beside her sits her daughter in law Farzana.
Wearing a shawl, as the Sun rays falls on her face she sits there listening to all the speakers from 12 pm to 6 pm, at the time when the protest is called off for the day.
"Ab is umr me kaha jayenge" ( Where will I go in this age now) she says as she wraps her shawl more tightly on her head.
"I am sitting here for my children and grandchildren, I am sitting at the protest so that my children can have a safe future in India," Mashawari says in a bleak voice.
Mashawari has been in Delhi for the past 55 years. She still recalls the day when she got married and came to Delhi with her husband from Farrukhabad in Uttar
"I moved to Delhi merely 8 days after my marriage.I am having grandchildren now. I want to face them and sitting in the protest is all I can do at my age," she says.
Her husband has expired in 2011, the widow who has three children al of whom are married now.
Farzana ,the daughter in law says "My husband has given permission to us to be a part of the protest, we daily take battery rikshaw from Batla House and reach Jamia Millia for the protest. We have to."
Mashawari, is a well-known face in Jamia protest right now. The younger women surrounding her call her 'Dadi' ( grandmother ). As the sun sets and the protest is called off she stands up and disappears like any other face in the crowd to come again the next day.