Rupa used to hide her facial scars underneath layers of cloth. Now she’s modeling clothes she designed for her own fashion line.
The young woman from Delhi, India, always wanted to be a fashion designer. But her lifelong dream was temporarily shattered in 2008 when her stepmother threw acid on her face while Rupa was sleeping.
The stepmother was found guilty, but only served 18 months in prison. She has reportedly shown no remorse for the attack that left Rupa permanently disfigured.
According to the Daily Mail, Rupa dropped her surname after her father supported her stepmother after the attack. She no longer has contact with him.
In addition to creating her own fashion line, Rupa is doing her part to support other acid attack victims. She teamed up with Stop Acid Attacks, a charity organization. Together, they launched Chhaon, a community support center for acid attack survivors. There, survivors can receive medical aid and emotional support in a secure environment.
For the photo shoot, other acid attack victims bravely stepped forward to help Rupa model her dresses. Photographer Rahul Saharan was honored to be able to take the photos as a tribute to women around the world who have been tortured. Saharan plans on creating a photo exhibition with proceeds going to the acid attack survivors.