Sushmita S. Preetha | The Daily Star
  • Sushmita S. Preetha

    The writer is an activist, journalist and outraged feminist.

  • Not even the bare minimum

    Renu Begum* can remember little of the life she had before she moved to Dhaka and joined a garments factory at the age of 12. Her father, a fisherman, had moved to Dhaka with his family in the early 90s. But there was not much an unskilled fisherman from the village could do in a city teeming with unemployed labourers who, like him, had migrated to the capital, dreaming of untold opportunities.
  • Struggling to be gracious hosts

    A year ago, when tens of thousands of destitute Rohingya, fleeing systematic violence in Rakhine State, had arrived at the outskirts of the small tourist town of Cox's Bazar in Bangladesh, locals had opened up their hearts and their homes to their “Muslim brothers and sisters” from neighbouring Myanmar.
  • Ethical challenges of documenting Birangonas

    There is a need for a descriptive narrative as opposed to a simplistic narrative. The Fhuljaan story is a clear example. Also the issue of anonymity vs confidentiality—do we anonymise these accounts or keep it confidential or publicise these names? I went for anonymising, but many of these women said, "these are my words, why isn’t my name there?"
  • The myth of the 8-hour work day

    Banu Begum, a 38-year-old garment worker, leaves home at 7.30 in the morning, drops off her two daughters at a nearby madrasa and then walks to her factory a few kilometres away.
  • Living with the ghost of Rana Plaza

    People tell her she is lucky to be alive, to have escaped the “clutches of death”. They tell her to “count her blessings” for making it out of the rubble that was once Rana Plaza, with her limbs intact. They remind her of all those who didn't share her fate.