The Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan was honoured at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Monday for the work raising awareness about human rights issues and in his speech, the King Khan Shah Rukh Khan Revealed The Moment that changed his life.
In his speech, SRK said, “Actors are renowned narcissists. No matter how much we pretend not to believe in external beauty, we tend to be obsessed with it one way or the other. And perhaps being surrounded by this obsession of beauty, a few years ago I came across a lady who had been brutalized by an acid attack. It kind of changed my life or my perspective of it, at least.”
He added, “To disfigure a woman by throwing acid on her face, to me, is one of the basest, crudest acts of subjugation imaginable. At the source of it lies the view that a woman does not have the right to assert her choice, say no to the advances of a man or a group of people. And yet, each of the women I met, I found within them the courage to move on with their lives and reject the idea of victimhood.
What struck me most about them was this- what was done to them only made them braver, stronger and able to free themselves, to make the choices everyone around them was telling them they could not make or should not make. From them I have learnt how courage can catalyze victimhood into heroism, how solidarity, rather than charity, enables the human will to overcome, how equality is not a concept but a truth that encompasses all living beings, how service of others is not a choice anymore for any of us but it is a duty that all of us must fulfill in the name of humankind.”
Shah Rukh Khan received the award for showing an exemplary commitment to uphold human dignity through his non-profitable Meer Foundation. Meer Foundation provides support to female victims of acid attacks and major burn injuries through medical treatment, legal aid, vocational training, rehabilitation and livelihood support. He has also been responsible for creating specialized children’s hospital wards and has supported childcare centers with free boarding for children undergoing cancer treatment.