Carrying on with its series of inspiring and insightful webinars amidst the ongoing lockdown scenario necessitated by the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, Asian Law College (ALC) organized a Live Interactive WEBINAR on ‘The Art of Living a Fearless Life’ by Ms Laxmi Agarwal for all B.A.LL.B. & LL.B. students and aspirants on Tuesday, 19th May 2020 at 4.00 pm. The webinar, as expected, developed into an inspiring saga of grit and courage so movingly related by the indomitable Indian acid attack survivor, Ms Laxmi Agarwal!
Even though she needs little introduction, a few words about the distinguished host will not be out-of-place here:
Ms Laxmi Agarwal, Founder-The Laxmi Foundation, is an Indian acid attack survivor, a campaigner for the right to acid attack victims, TV host and former Director, Chhanv Foundation, an NGO dedicated to help acid attack survivors in India. An acid survivor in 2005 at the age of 16, she has worked tremendously for the help of acid attack victims. One of her petitions has led the Supreme Court to order the Central and State Governments to regulate the sales of acid and the Parliament to enable easier prosecutions of acid attack perpetrators. She has been honoured for her courage and women empowerment by the Ministry of Women & Child Development and by UNICEF for her campaign of ‘Stop Sales of Acid’. She has also been awarded by the First Lady Michelle Obama for her tremendous contribution & courageous efforts towards society. The movie ‘Chhapaak’ is based on her life and stars Deepika Padukone in her role.
An initiative of AAFT University – which is an integral part of Asian Education Group and is rated as “the first film, media and arts university in India” – this WEBINAR was jointly organized by Asian Law College (ALC) ) – which is a constituent group college of Asian Education Group and is ranked as one of the best Law Colleges in Delhi NCR – for all B.A.LL.B. & LL.B. students. The WEBINAR was followed by a lively Q&A Session with the distinguished guest.
This life-altering webinar session started with the distinguished guest, Ms Laxmi Agarwal thanking ALC for this honour and congratulating ALC students for pursuing their B.A.LL.B./LL.B. courses from one of the reputed law college in India.
Thereafter, Ms Laxmi Agarwal went on to relate her own heart-wrenching story of the unfortunate and horrific acid attack that she suffered in 2005 at the age of 16 after she rebuffed the romantic advances of one Naeem Khan. She narrated the poignant details of those painful moments that broke the back of her otherwise happy family of four members that included her father, mother, brother and herself and led her to even contemplate the thought of suicide.
At this point, according to her, when she “gave up the will to live with this burnt-out face”, her parents, and especially her father, stood up for her cause and imparted her the most important lessons for her life – i.e. “Nothing is impossible in this world!” and to “Always stay Positive in life, come what may!”
She then narrated how she discovered her pillars of strength in her parents, her father’s boss and in her lawyer who fought her case in the court of law without charging any fee for the services. This emboldened her to take up the cause of the acid attack victims as a challenge and an opportunity to craft an important crusade for justice for the betterment of society at large.
Once done with her moving story of pain and struggle, Ms Agarwal opened the session for questions from the participants. As expected, several questions relating to her life and struggles were put up by the students, to which she replied most convincingly and inspiringly.
Conveying her message for AEG towards the end, Ms Laxmi Agarwal first referred to the sufferings being faced due to lockdown by so many people around us and advised the students to “always help people who need you in this hour of crisis”. She then called upon the students to “come out in support of the cause of survivors of societal tragedies like rape, acid attack, etc.” Next, she advised them to love their parents and share with them all their joys and worries of life and seek their counsel. And then she concluded saying, “Love yourself, focus on your goal, face the competitions positively, stay cool, stay positive and remember to live for those who love you the most.”