Six years back, when Rupa's stepmother poured acid on her face while she was sleeping, and left her alone for six hours, she must not have thought that one day, this girl would go on to become an inspiration for victims of all kind.
Today, Rupa is not only a leading member of Stop Acid Attacks' team - which mobilised the campaign that helped ban open sale of acid- she is also an up-and-coming fashion designer.
When Rupa is not busy fighting the injustice against survivors of acid attack, she has been working to realise her childhood dream of designing clothes and opening her own boutique. So, when Rupa expressed the desire to showcase her designs, cinematographer, director, photographer and most importantly a social activist, Rahul Saharan, could not let go of the opportunity.
"I have been working with this NGO (Chhanv) for the last couple of years and so I have an update regarding the volunteers. When they said photoshoot karna hai (we have to do a photoshoot), I said abhi aake karta hoon (I'll come and do it now) and we did it," Saharan told IBTimes, India edition.
This photoshoot is an opportunity for Rupa to showcase her designs and is the first step towards opening her own boutique, which she hopes will give her the financial independancy for the rehabilitation of acid attack victims.
However, rather than approaching professional models for the shoot, Saharan made the choice of incorporating acid attack survivors as his muses. "Before the shoot, I wrote down a few ideas of how I wanted it to shape up, what I wanted to highlight. Just like a director would direct his movie, I made certain decisions regarding the photoshoot."
Rupa is wearing the white dress for the shoot, while Laxmi Saa, a fellow acid attack survivor and activist, is dressed in a pink and blue lehenga. She was attacked in 2005 whenshe was just 15 by a lovesick man twice her age in one of Delhi's busiest markets in the broad daylight.
Since then, Laxmi has gone on to become one of the firecest activists against acid attacks, even receiving the "Women of Courage Award" from first lady Michelle Obama, and has found love in Alok Dixit, a fellow social activist. Other models are Ritu (in the black dress), Sonam (in the blue dress) and Chanchal (in the white).
"I have known all of them for a while now and I know their stories, which is why they were comfortable doing the photoshoot with me. You can see their happiness in the pictures," says Saharan.
Saharan dedicates this inspirational shoot to every woman on earth. He says, "All of you are bful from skinny to healthy, dark to fair, tall to short, ebony to porcelain-skinned; the quirky, clumsy, shy, outgoing and all in between so ladies live ur life stay happy no matter who say what you are beautiful believe in it have courage fight back if u stand many will follow you....Rise and shine".
On more of his inspiring and novel projects Saharan says he has many in the pipeline, regarding keeping cities clean, spreading happiness, human trafficking, health and many more. "I hope whatever small initiatives I can do, on a professional and personal level, would bring about a little change in society."