Nestled in the Muzaffarpur district of Bihar is the red light area called Chaturbhuj Sthan, which is known to house over 3,500 sex workers. The area is known in common parlance as badnaam gali or infamous alley, and every woman or girl who resides there is assumed to be engaged in sex work. This assumption, as anybody who knows anything about red light districts would tell you, is not correct as people from all sorts of backgrounds make up the milieu of urban spaces like these. One woman from Chaturbhuj Sthan, Naseema Khatoon, decided to change this common perception about red light districts and give voice to the struggles of the women of Chaturbhuj Sthan.Naseema Khatoon is a well-known human rights activist whose work has been dedicated to empower the sex workers in Indias red light districts, predominantly in Chaturbhuj Sthan. Brought up in a red light district herself, Khatoon decided to work towards providing women of her community with not only education but also alternative solutions to enable the women with other avenues of earning a livelihood. To this effect, she launched her NGO, Parcham, where the rehabilitation of sex workers as well as their families is a key focus area.In 2004, Naseema Khatoon started Jugnu, a handwritten, five-page newspaper that enlightens the world about the life and struggles of sex workers. She also organised street plays to educate migrant workers, organised loans to start small handicraft businesses, and showcased the talents of children from the area via Jugnuall in an effort to ensure that the world and the residents of Chaturbhuj Sthan are empowered to find an identity and sense of freedom beyond the restrictions of a red light district. Jugnu, now a 32-pages-long magazine, is now raising awareness not only about the sex workers of Bihar, but also covering stories of exploitation and rape that the community frequently experiences.It is primarily as a result of Khatoons hard work that girls and women from the community are now getting an education beyond this area of Bihar and getting an opportunity to improve their lives. Her contributions have been recognised and felicitated by Mrs Nita Mukesh Ambani and Sachin Tendulkar. To know more about Khatoon, her life and her work, head to the link in bio.