It was indeed a disturbing truth that the brutal practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) continues in parts of the African continent. What most of us did not expect was the ugly revelation that this method of oppression was being practiced in our own backyards. Reports of the prevalence of FGM (known as khatna in the community) among the Dawoodi Bohra community have taken many gender activists by surprise. FGM is an uncomfortable reality, about which few Bohra women had so far dared to talk about openly was brought to light by an anonymous letter to the chairperson of the international NGO, Tostan.
We took up the issue and created a bloggers campaign around it along with a social media dialogue. The objective was to collect online signatures for the petition against the practice.