Noorjahan Diwan, today a social activist, is a determined young Muslim woman. Not long ago, she was scared to board a bus or to walk home from the bus stop alone. Married at a young age, Noorjahan soon had three children. With a resolve to complete her education after marriage, she joined Mahila Arts college and later did a computer course.
When her third child was 6 months old, life took an unexpected turn. Ethnic riots broke out in Gujarat and people from several communities were targeted. Noorjahan and her husband were constantly on the move with their three little kids, to stay safe from the violent mobs. Seeing so many people with small children suffer and affected by the riots, Noorjahan decided to spin the wheels of change. Once things stabilised a little, she dumped her identity of a house wife, her shyness and the burqa (veil) and started working for the riot-affected victims. Noorjahan’s husband opposed her decision to work as a social activist. However, she did not let this demotivate her. She worked in the relief camps and helped in providing medical aid to the women. Today, as Coordinator of the NGO Anhad, Noorjehan continues to dedicate herself to safeguarding human rights of people.