BBC 100 Women 2019

7 Indian women made it to the BBC 100 Women 2019 list

October 24, 2019

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) released its list of 100 Women, this year from various fields of life. The list features seven Indian women from poet to space entrepreneur and yoga expert. 

The BBC launched this series in 2013 to address the under-represented women in the media. Following the Nirbhaya gang rape in Delhi, the then BBC Controller Liliane Landor, along with BBC editor Fiona Crack and other journalists got inspired to create a series focusing on the issues and achievements of women around the world.

A wide range of topics are covered while choosing the top 100 women every year. This includes: employment and motherhood challenges, feminism and religion, cultural and social challenges and many more.

Here’s are the Indian women who made it to the list this year:

Parveena AhangarParveena Ahanger

Known as the “Iron lady of Kashmir”, Parveena Ahanger has been ranked at position 2 in the list. She is the Founder and Chairperson of Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) in Jammu and Kashmir. Her teenage son disappeared in 1990, a time during which there was an uprising against Indian rule in Kashmir. She was also nominated for Nobel Peace Prize in 2005. 

Aranya JoharAranya Johar

This 21-year old poet uses beat poetry to address issues like gender equality, mental health and body positivity. She became a popular face after her first piece released in 2017, named as “A Brown Girl’s Guide to Beauty”, which received millions of views in YouTube within a span of 2 days.

Susmita MohantySusmita Mohanty

Dr. Susmita Mohanty is the only space entrepreneur in the world to have started companies on 3 different continents. Prior to turning an entrepreneur, she worked for the International Space Station Program at Boeing in California and also worked at NASA for a short period. Hailed as ‘India’s space woman’, she uses her business to help monitor and understand climate change from space.

Subhalakshmi Nandi

Subhalakshmi Nandi is the Deputy Regional Director at the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) Asia office. She has spent over 15 years working to improve gender equality and rights of women farmers. She further works on ending violence against women and improving women’s education.

Natasha Noel

A yoga expert and a dancer, Natasha Noel is an inspiration for all women. She lost her mother at the age of 3 and was sexually abused and molested at a very young age. A body positivity influencer, she “often opens up about her traumatic childhood on social media, after losing her mother at the age of three and being the victim of child abuse.”

Vandana ShivaVandana Shiva

A scholar, environmental activist, and an author, Vandana Shiva was part of a movement in the 1970s who threw her arms around trees to prevent them being felled, also known as ‘tree-huggers’. She is now “a world-renowned environmental leader and winner of the Alternative Nobel Peace Prize.” Plus, the 66-year old has authored more than twenty books.

Pragati SinghPragati Singh

The founder of Indian Aces, an online community for asexual people, Pragati Singh is a qualified doctor, who researches on asexuality. She “received messages from women who didn’t want to have sex but were facing an arranged marriage. So she began organising meet-ups for people looking for non-sexual relationships” and came with the idea of Indian Aces.

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