Steinem flew quietly into Delhi earlier this week. Shabana, a long-standing admirer of Gloria’s beliefs has never made any bones of the fact that much of her ideology as an actress and an individual has been moulded by Ms Steinem’s thoughts. “She’s definitely a role-model,” says Shabana, herself a role-model to generations of women in India.
Shabana who was in Dubai performing her long-running play ‘Tumhari Amrita’ flew in to Delhi on Monday to meet Gloria Steinem. Steinem and Azmi’s meeting lasted much longer than it was expected to. It would be no exaggeration to say Shabana came satiated from the historic encounter.
Says Shabana, “Yes, I spent a glorious evening with my heroine Gloria Steinem in Delhi on Monday. I consider her a key figure in the feminist movement. We talked about the feminist movement, her emotional attachment to India. We also spoke about cinema and my project to educate and empower the girl child in my ancestral village in Mijwan.”
Ms Steinman was dressed in simple pastel saree. Should we consider that the ultimate raveling of the feminist movement?
Shabana recalls the letter that Ms Steinem had sent her after watching Deepa Mehta’s Fire. Shabana had been introduced to Gloria Steinem as the ‘Melina Mercouri Of India’. Recalls Shabana, “She found Fire deeply moving. I was emotionally connected to her since then.”
The two powerful women parted with the promise of several crucial collaborations on matters that consider women’s empowerment.