Writing with Fire

In the midst of a patriarchal news landscape, the reporters with Khabar Lahariya – India’s only all-female news network – are taking it upon themselves to redefine power.

Series
Independent Lens
Premiere Date
March 28, 2022
Length
90 minutes
  • Award laurels-r Created with Sketch.
    2021 Sundance Film Festival-Special Jury Award for Impact and Change
  • Co-Director/Producer

    Rintu Thomas

    Co-Director

    Sushmit Ghosh

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    The Film

    In the midst of a crowded, patriarchal news landscape, the reporters with Khabar Lahariya – India’s only all-female news network – are taking it upon themselves to cover their country’s inequities with unflinching and intrepid determination. Armed only with their smartphones, these fearless journalists roam the state of Uttar Pradesh, exposing the country’s extremist Hindu leadership, rape culture, and rampant corruption that victimizes those without voice or power. They investigate the incompetence of the local police force, listen to and stand by victims of caste and gender violence, and challenge long-standing, harmful practices that lead to injustice and intimidation.

    Writing with Fire follows this ambitious group of Dalit women—led by their chief reporter, Meera, one of the undaunted women from India’s lowest caste behind Khabar Lahariya. As the team switches from print to digital in order to stay relevant, they harness the power of online media and YouTube to reach audiences far beyond the confines of their social standing in order to broadcast abuses of patriarchy and government malfeasance. Their awe-inspiring efforts to redefine traditional notions of power, be it on the frontlines of India's biggest issues or within the confines of their homes, are redefining what it means to actually be powerful.

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