Sanghapali Aruna

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Aruna Sanghapali
Born (1979-10-19) 19 October 1979 (age 39)
OccupationSocial activist
Known forDalit women's rights

Sanghapali Aruna is a human rights activist from India, best known for her work on Dalit women's rights. She is the Executive Director of Project Mukti.[1][2]

Aruna was born in 1979 in Vishakapatnam, Andhra Pradesh,[citation needed] India, in a Dalit community, the daughter of a Dalit activist.[3]

She was studying for her doctorate degree in linguistics at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, where she had been a founder member of the Birsa Ambedkar Phule Students’ Association.[4][5]

In 2014 she was part of the Dalit Mahila Swabhiman Yatra, or the Dalit Women's Self-Respect Tour, traveling through India to raise awareness of caste-based violence,[6] and was part of the Dalit Women Fight campaign in 2015.[3][7][8] She was also involved in activism surrounding Dalit student Rohith Vemula’s death at the University of Hyderabad.[9]

Aruna was a co-founder of Dalit History Month.[10][11]

As of 2018, she is the Executive Director of Project Mukti,[1][12] which describes itself as "a Dalit Bahujan Adivasi women, gender non-conforming, and trans led start-up working to end caste apartheid in South Asia through a promise to openness and participatory innovation." According to the Indian Express, Aruna works on digital literacy among Dalit, Bahujan, Adivasi, and Muslim communities.[13]

Describing her work, Aruna writes:[14]

Dalit women have all the tools to succeed once we are removed from the shadow of violence and untouchability. That is why our mission has always been to move past the narrative of atrocity and poverty and instead build technological equity and literacy among Dalit Bahujan women and gender minorities. We do this through training, building tech, growing Dalit Bahujan knowledge and culture, and fostering solidarity among Dalit Bahujan-Adivasi people.[14]

In 2018, Aruna was the subject of controversy when she gave Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, two posters, which said “End Caste Apartheid” and “Smash Brahminical Patriarchy” during a meeting in New Delhi. Dorsey posed for a group photo holding the poster saying “Smash Brahminical Patriarchy.”[14] He was subsequently criticized for holding the poster, and Twitter India apologized on his behalf.[15]


  1. ^ a b "Activist says apology is not required". Deccan Chronicle. 2018-11-21. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  2. ^ "Project Mukti: Team". Project Mukti.
  3. ^ a b Javaid, Maham (October 15, 2015). "How India's "Untouchable" Women Are Fighting Back Against Sexual Violence". Refinery29. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  4. ^ "WIRE -together against injustice" (PDF). Amnesty International. p. 13. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
  5. ^ Krishna, Geetanjali (2015-04-18). "Revisiting stories to revive Dalit history". Business Standard India. Retrieved 2018-06-07.
  6. ^ "Three times Indian Dalit and American POC movements were awesome together". Feministing. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  7. ^ "From Black Lives Matter, activists for India's discriminated Dalits learn tactics to press for dignity". Public Radio International. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  8. ^ "Dalit Women Fight". Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  9. ^ S, Deepika (August 17, 2016). ""The Una Yatra is a Message to the Gau Rakshaks and Hindu Fundamentalists that If You Attack Us, We Won't be Silent Anymore"". The Ladies Finger. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  10. ^ Aruna, Sanghapali (April 1, 2018). "Dalit history threatens the powerful. That is why they want to erase, destroy and jail it". The Print.
  11. ^ Chari, Mridula (Apr 15, 2018). "Resistance and resilience: Dalit History Month 2018 showcases neglected histories and untold stories". Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  12. ^ Harad, Tejas (2018-08-31). "Towards an internet of equals". Mint. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  13. ^ "Upper-caste backlash makes Twitter cut sorry figure". The Indian Express. 2018-11-21. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  14. ^ a b c Aruna, Sanghapali (Nov 21, 2018). "My poster in Jack Dorsey's hands wasn't the point; real threat to trolls was me seeking safety of oppressed on Twitter". Firstpost. Retrieved 2018-11-21.
  15. ^ "Twitter CEO trolled for 'hate mongering' against Brahmins". The Times of India. Retrieved 2018-11-21.