Indore (MP):Locals in Indore were stunned when a woman fruit seller, who was upset with the repeated lockdowns due to Covid-19, expressed her displeasure in fluent English and later identified herself as a former research scholar of Devi Ahilya University, Indore.
The video, which went viral on social media on Wednesday, showed the woman, who has a fruit shop at Malwa Mill area in the city, complaining about the administration’s move to impose prohibitive measures in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.
The woman identified herself as Raeesa Ansari and said that the repeated curbs in Indore’s markets have left the fruit and vegetable sellers penniless.
“At times, one side of the market is closed and on others, the second one is shut by the administration and there are hardly any buyers. What we are supposed to feed our families,” asked Ansari who claimed that most of the sellers in the area are second or third generation shopkeepers.
“I too inherited fruit shop from my father”, Ansari said, adding that she was upset with the district collector, municipal corporation and Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the prohibitive measures, which according to her had dried up the income of the poor vendors.
On being asked about her qualification, Raeesa claimed that she has done Master of Science in Physics and completed PhD in Material Science from Devi Ahilya Vishwa Vidyalaya in the year 2011.
Asked why she had not opted for a better job, she replied that she was not able to secure one.
“The first question is who will give the job to me. The perception that coronavirus is being generated from Muslims has become common now. Because my name is Raeesa Ansari, no college or research institution is willing to give me a job,” she alleged.
Dr Rajkumar Chauhan, who was posted at DAVV’s physics department before 2010 told News18 that he recognised Raeesa as she had been a student then and met her frequently. “I remember that Raeesa had given a decked up fruit basket for my daughter’s engagement,” recounted Chauhan.
“She was a bright student and used to study hard but I am am not sure what prompted her to start working at her family’s shop,” Chauhan said.
Dr Ashutosh Mishra, the HoD at DAVV Physics Department confirmed that Raeesa had been a student around a decade ago. Mishra claimed that Raeesa was a bright scholar. On Raeesa’s charges of being denied chances because of being Muslim, the HoD rubbished the allegations saying caste has nothing to do with jobs in the field of science and technology as all that matters is merit and scientific temperament.
Dr Ratnesh Gupta, under whom Raeesa completed her PhD, said that he could not remember her as it was an old issue.
However, the woman, Raeesa Ansari, could not be reached for comment. Covid-19 infections are on the rise in Indore for the past few days and the administration has decided to impose prohibitive measures in the markets as opposed to complete lockdown to rein in the cases.