In order to promote women education and empowerment in the state, Devyani Khobaragade has decided to take part in a cross-country run taking place at Maharashtra. Devyani was charged with Visa fraud at USA in 2013 by the authorities. She came into light due to the controversy that erupted due to the claim made by the US authorities.
Australian MP Pat Farmer has undertaken a 4600 km. ‘Spirit of India Run’ that will take place from Kanyakumari to Srinagar. The aim of the run is to raise funds for girl’s education in India and improve bilateral ties between the two countries. Khobragade has decided to take part in the run, which is promoted both by the Indian and Australian governments. Pat Farmer has started his run from Kanyakumari on 26 January 2016 and is expected to enter Maharashtra on 9 February. Khobragade will join the Australian MP in Maharashtra, during his run.
Khobragade has taken part in the half-marathons previously and this time around she will help the Australian MP to have a meeting with the school children of the state. She seemed keen to become part of this entire campaign, as the run contained opportunity to bring out the importance of women education and related issues in the country.
Along the route that they will take during the run, both Khobragade and Farmer will speak and give demonstrations on issues related with women education and related issues. The school children will also be encouraged to take part in small courses with the run.
The Foreign Ministry, tourism ministry and Mahindra Foundation is supporting the run by Farmer and according to the foreign ministry; this run is one of its kind public diplomacy to improve Indo-Australian relationships. According to the ministry statement made earlier, “As Pat runs through cities, towns and villages, stopping to interact with the local community, he will witness India’s immense diversity, natural beauty and vibrant culture- capturing in short months, the Spirit of India.”
Diplomat Khobragade has been voicing her concern for the inequality prevailed in the society and demanding their rights. She, on one of her write-ups on sexual harassment, has said that the solution lies in raising a girl and a boy more fairly and equitably. According to her, “So they do not stand by the next time anyone is subjected to touching or staring by men. So they stop going to films which show stalking as acceptable behavior or women as brainless sex objects.” She is currently working as Director of MEA’s state division and is responsible for maintaining liaison of the ministry with the states.