Arfa Khanum Sherwani is a senior editor at The Wire, an independent online news platform that covers a wide range of issues in India. She is known for her fearless and outspoken journalism, which often challenges the dominant narratives and exposes the injustices and inequalities in the society. She is also a recipient of the prestigious Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Award and the Chameli Devi Jain Award for Outstanding Women Media Person.
A love letter to the country
Sherwani recently delivered a lecture at the Aligarh Muslim University, where she spoke about her journey as a journalist and her passion for the profession. She said that her journalism is her love letter to the country, and she does not see it as a job, but as a duty and a responsibility.
She said that she believes in the idea of India as a secular, democratic, and pluralistic nation, where every citizen has equal rights and dignity. She said that she is proud of the diversity and the richness of the culture and the heritage of the country, and she wants to preserve and protect it from the forces that want to destroy it.
She said that she is not afraid of speaking the truth, even if it means facing threats and attacks from the powerful and the intolerant. She said that she is inspired by the courage and the resilience of the people who are fighting for their rights and their dignity, and she wants to amplify their voices and their stories.
A voice for the voiceless
Sherwani has been covering various issues that affect the lives of the common people, especially the marginalized and the oppressed communities. She has reported on the farmers’ protests, the citizenship law protests, the Kashmir lockdown, the Delhi riots, the Hathras gangrape case, the COVID-19 pandemic, and many other topics that have exposed the failures and the atrocities of the government and the authorities.
She has also interviewed several prominent personalities, such as former president Pranab Mukherjee, former prime minister Manmohan Singh, former chief justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, former chief election commissioner S.Y. Quraishi, former chief economic adviser Arvind Subramanian, and many others. She has asked them tough and critical questions, and challenged their views and opinions.
She has also featured several experts, activists, scholars, artists, and writers on her show, and engaged them in meaningful and insightful discussions on various issues. She has also given a platform to the young and the emerging voices, who are bringing new perspectives and ideas to the public discourse.
A role model for the aspiring journalists
Sherwani has been a role model for many aspiring journalists, especially women and minorities, who want to pursue a career in journalism. She has encouraged and motivated them to follow their dreams and passions, and to uphold the values and the ethics of the profession.
She has also shared her experiences and her learnings with the students and the faculty of various universities and institutions, where she has been invited as a guest speaker or a panelist. She has also participated in several workshops and seminars, where she has imparted her skills and knowledge to the budding journalists.
She has also been a part of several initiatives and campaigns that aim to promote and support independent and quality journalism in the country. She has also been vocal about the challenges and the threats that the journalists face in the current scenario, and has demanded justice and protection for them.