If summarized in one sentence, ‘we are the voice of margin.’ Voice of Margin endeavours to give a voice to those who have been voiceless. Voices which have been at best ignored and worst even muzzled, by legacy media over the years in their unending quest for TRPs, advertisements and proximity to power. Voices which have remained unheard. Voices that matter for the sake of equality. And who are these voiceless people? It’s the people in the margins, like extras in the dance of democracy. Allow us to explain.
It all begins with a human being’s ultimate quest for justice so that the powerful do not prey upon the weak. This gives birth to society and consequently to democracy. Now, democracy might not be perfect, but it’s the best we have got. So, how does democracy work? Democracy is a constant experiment that relies on its subjects to be involved. It demands that its subjects are informed, aware and engaged in its execution. Let me break it down a bit. Imagine a monarchy or a dictatorship. It does not matter what people know or think about state affairs. The prosperity or suffering of the realm depends entirely on the benevolence of their ruler. But in a democracy, people participate to decide policies that affect their lives. Since people decide policies made for people, theoretically it must in all cases serve their benefit. But, is it so the case often? Then how does democracy falter?
The entire idea is based on a single assumption. Collective wisdom is the best solution to all problems. But then, what happens when public opinion is moulded, manufactured and often propagandized? Vested interests jeopardize the equal distribution of resources, knowledge and information. People’s representatives tend to become people’s masters. Hunger for power leads to destabilizing every check and balance in the system. Legislative, execution and judiciary collude to rob even the last morsel from the poorest. That is where media can play its role in bringing back the stability through information and opinions.
But what happens, when even the media colludes with the same system and becomes an accomplice in the crime? Fake news, misinformation and propaganda to serve the people in power become the sole job of the media. When it creates a demigod of a demon and demonizes the distressed. When dummy enemies are created to distract from the real enemies. When it sides with the people in power shamelessly. When the media just becomes another advertiser for the government. At a time, when government policies determine the very existence of its citizens, it becomes even more imperative for the people to start participating in the process.
When the media is not doing its job, it is the citizens who must pitch in to do that. There has never been a greater need for Citizen Journalism in India than now. Voice of Margin wishes to provide that platform to people. If you have an issue, don’t wait for some messiah to voice it. Be your voice. Voice of Margin is a 360-degree platform. If you have something to say, author an article or a news report, make a video report, make a podcast, draw a cartoon, click a photograph, or any other medium. Give wings to your creativity. And most importantly, ‘Speak’ till you still have a voice. Every voice matters.
Noor Fatima (Founder, Operation Head, Editor Multimedia)
Noor is the glue that binds this group together. It is her firm belief that every person has a story to tell and needs a platform to narrate, which gave birth to the idea called Voice of Margin. She has a master’s degree in Development Communication from AJK MCRC Jamia Millia Islamia. She has worked as a Communications Specialist at Rouge Communications, Delhi, Aangan NGO and has interned at Leading Media House. She manages the VOM operation and keeps the wheels churning backed by young passionate Interns. As a Multi-Media Editor, she stays abreast and ahead of new storytelling and supports the growth of visual content.
Asfia Kulsoom (Editor, English)
Asfia did her graduation in Journalism & Mass Communication. She is deeply passionate about her field of work and a firm believer of everyone’s right to voice their opinion. She advocates the philosophy that, voice gives power and voice gives freedom. She has a natural talent for writing highly researched and elaborate articles.
Mallika Mehzabeen (Multi Media Content Creator)
Mallika is like the Swiss Army Knife of the team. A mass communication and journalism graduate who believes in writing her mind and heart with the help of words. She doubles as a video editor and content writer for videos.
Priyanka Saroha (Editor, Hindi)
Priyanka is from Sonipat Haryana and doing her graduation in Hindi literature from Delhi University. Along with this, she has served in NCC for 3 years. She is working as a Hindi writer with Voice of Margin.
Shahzeb Mohammed Danish (Contributing Editor – English)
Shahzeb is a consummate professional with a keen eye on media industry. He is one of the core team members of VoM and Lead Editor of English content. He doubles as an Earthquake Engineer and designs high rise buildings. He does photography as a hobby.
Hanzala Aman (Contributing Editor – Hindi)
Hanzala hails from Gaya, Bihar, but considers himself a global citizen. He has studied Agriculture from SHUATS, Allahabad between 2013 and 2017, and then Rural Technology and Development from the University of Allahabad. He is currently studying Economics from IGNOU. He has been writing for many years, and was previously associated with HW News English as a columnist. He is also on the Board of Directors with an NGO in his hometown.
Arshe Alam (Contributing Lead – Digital Media Platform)
Arshe is an IT professional with decades of experience in the IT and Telecom industry. He has been involved in all stages of building a digital platform as a lead for several professional projects. He is a great proponent of Media Literacy and Citizen Journalism. He has a knack for critical thinking and problem solving. Apart from these, he has great people skills and manages the team. He is the go-to person for any issue. He is available whenever the team needs him.
Aariz Imam (Contributing Associate Editor- English)
Aariz is an impeccable writer with a keen eye on detail, rationality and research. He has been a contributing writer for Kashmir Monitor, The Rising Kashmir, Caravandaily, TwoCircles.net, Countercurrents.org, The Companion, Youth Ki Awaaz over the years. Often his articles are professionally researched, elaborate and hard hitting. He doubles as an Electrical Engineer and has a master’s degree in Business Management.
Shireen Anwar Hossain (Contributing – Graphics Designer)
Shireen is a creative person with a multitude of hobbies. She is responsible for all the beautiful graphic design work on the website. She is a cartoon enthusiast with an immaculate sense of humour. She doubles as an Architect, graduate from Aligarh Muslim University and has a master’s degree in Urban Design from School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi. She works in an MNC by the day and finds her niche in art after work.