Sunita Aralikar (53) can never forget the name of the Latur hamlet, “Tupadi” where girl children are often looked upon as burdens; Sunita has overcome many life-threatening obstacles in her life’s journey. She was buried alive by her illiterate father at just 16 days old after her mother died. Fortunately her maternal grandfather, who got wind of the planned killing, pulled her out of the tiny grave, later, when she was 14, her father again sent goons to kill her. Another time she escaped. This shocking event made Sunita resolve to fight the social evil of female infanticide.
With great financial limitations, she finished high school and found a job as a trainee nurse in a hospital in Latur. Soon after, she was married to Dilip, a social worker, who supported her decision to work for women empowerment completely. With steely determination, Sunita has fought social prejudices and poverty head on in rural Maharashtra.
She uses her own life story to inspire illiterate and poor families so they took pride in their girls, encourage young girls who are school drop-outs to go back to complete their education and to lobby with local governments to support her cause.
Sunita has through her writing and fearless activism has encouraged more women to come forward and fight violence against women.
Today, she is the Director of The Maharashtra Housing Finance Corporation and an epitome of womanpower. She has conducted over 90 inter caste marriages and successfully fighting evils like female infanticide that nearly took her own life.