A Teej with a difference in Gangtok

Gangtok, 09 Sept: Teej celebrations kicked off in the capital today with a group of young people organising a open-for-all Teej, a festival which has traditionally involved only women. Many independent women converged today to give a strong message of empowering each other by sharing their experiences. This program was held in aid of Lee Al old age home at Tintek. The event had the participation of Rhena Rai, Chairperson, Sikkim State Women's Commission, who congratulated the organisers for a “different kind” of Teej program. She highlighted that women in Sikkim were now independent and have been working shoulder-to-shoulder with men in the task of nation-building and were truly equal in Sikkim now. She added that the Commission has been working actively to help women in distress and also appealed to women to approach the Commission for any help. Entrepreneurs Shova Rai and Rajshree Subba, social workers Sunita Sirohia and Srijana Thapa Chettri were present as judges for Miss/Mrs Teej competition held as part of the event. The judges also shared their experiences with the audience. Rajshree Subba stated that being a woman was a blessing and that it required a lot of guts and gumption to become a successful person in life. She applauded women for being the torchbearers of love and kindness. Similarly Shova Rai also shared details of her life struggles and held that women need to help each other to empower not just themselves but their families and society. Meanwhile, Monalisa Bhutia was declared Mrs Teej, while best make up went to Sangeeta Sunar and with best dress to Sandhya Gurung. One of the organizers, Sushmita Pakhrin, stated that the main idea behind the event was to raise awareness and funds for Lee Al old age home. The organisers have also appealed to the general public to donate and pay due attention to the old age home.