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Psych Talk: Busting Myths about Mental Health

June 29, 2020 AARUSHI JAIN 0 Comments




This is a report on the webinar- PSYCH TALK: BUSTING MYTHS ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH. It was held on 29th June, 2020, Monday from 08:00p.m onwards. This webinar is organized by EMPOWER PEOPLE .It’s about clearing the illogical thoughts of people. Here we have two speakers-: Shivani Nirmal and Sumati Rani.

MYTH 1: Psychologists can read your mind.

Actually it’s not true. It’s based on science work with scope of phonemically world and work on research. As they are human being who does not know what’s in your mind. Who claims that they can read mind our not psychologists.

MYTH 2: Mental Health doesn’t make much a difference.

People take this so lightly. It is just like other organ. If you are having some problem then they hinder your daily tasks. It’s your brain which function all other things. Psychologists will not judge you like other’s can so take it serious and cure it as soon as possible.

MYTH 3: Talking about my mental health makes me weak/feminine- “ladki Hai Kya? Mard bano!”

Here we need specially address the guys here. And its hurts because when they listen this kind of words which makes they feel inferior about talking this. We need to get here gender expectation that we impose and toxic masculinity. There are many consequences that occurs. Suicide rate & depression rate our increasing in male in context to India which is alarming. Talk about this with whom you are comfortable. So we need to acknowledge this.

MYTH 4: There is something WRONG with me if I have mental health issues.

If someone is going to the therapists or telling about the issue they are facing then society and nearby people will say that –“you are not mad”, nothing is like this. If you are facing this then it’s not a problem with you their many factors- economic, social, PTSD, etc. you to need to understand the reasons & address them and solve. If you are feeling stressed & anxiety so it’s not your fault talk to someone who does not judge you and you should have someone like this.

MYTH 5: The person is just being lazy or not trying enough-“Stop whining, get yourself together.” “You are just imagining.” “People have it worse than you.”

How much you try? And everyone has sometime mental illness. It is cruel for anyone comparing with anyone else is just not correct because everyone is different. That your pain is less and mine is more has different history. No point in comparing. Nothing is stable and we need to stop judging each person from another one.

MYTH 6: “Be positive. Everything will make sense.”

This sentence is the worst thing you can tell someone who is going through mental health. They are feeling anxious and how do you know everything will good. It is good to appreciate the little things we have but comparatively we can’t deny that we are bound to feel low at some point of time. Equally address this and their mentors& guru’s on social media. If you will not accept and recognize the wrong how will you cure & correct it. Try to figure out.

MYTH 7: “Thoda exercise kar, sab thik ho jyega.”

Mind and our body is inter-related so what you feel affects your body also. Feeling calm, peace and soon every single time is not possible so don’t underestimate. And if it’s serious then reach out to professionals and loved ones. As it’s important to know and these statements are just sometimes invalid too.

MYTH 8: Mental Health is the individual’s problem. It is your fault if you are struggling.

People should start believing that empathy is important. And if you can’t emphasize so just listen to the person and just don’t burst out the advice. You just have to be patient. Someone is reciprocating and if can be cured by professionals. You can’t hold yourself responsible. Just be there for them sometimes not always like some little gestures of asking them.

MYTH 9: Visiting a Therapist is a matter of shame.

We all deserve a therapy as we are living as in a society where we are stressed and things are complicated too. People go to therapist just to understand & navigate themselves. Untangle the trauma from past which you can’t handle any more so we need to understand & seek help. Therapist are trained, analyzing you, diagnose after several thing and if you can’t access the therapy there our helplines that are available. So we need to understand this and it is not a matter of shame. Must have support system as they can save lives. Therapy does not make you weak it’s actually make us better human being.

MYTH 10: Psychologists don’t have any mental health issues/illness.

 Like people think that you are doctor how can you have a cold? This is something very wrong and vice versa goes for psychologists. As professionals are same as other human beings. So we as psychologists are vulnerable. Amount of emotional loads that goes on psychologists as you can share with them but they have to think a lot before this. If someone knows that how human beings tends and behave that doesn’t mean that they can’t go through same.

So we can summarize this by that all of them are just a myth which you need to stop believing and understand the importance of this. Mental health is just not out of the box as you treat it. It’s just like all other problems that appears physically and this occurs mentally. So we need to support the people who are suffering from these issues. There is nothing impossible if we start thinking.








Kavi Sammelan- Marathi Special!

June 28, 2020 EMPOWER PEOPLE 0 Comments


What does a Therapy session look like?

June 28, 2020 AARUSHI JAIN 0 Comments




Shivani and Sumati are back with their Psych Talk session and this time it is about busting myths, stereotypes and stigma around therapy with: Amruta Khare (Consulting Psychologist Remedial Education Therapist). So, what does a Therapy session really look like? This was held on Monday, 27th July, 2020 at 8.00 pm

Each session is, essentially, a problem-solving session. You describe your current situation, and your feelings about it, and then the therapist uses their expertise to assist you in trying to resolve that problem so you can move closer to having the life you wish to have.

Myth 1: Therapy is only for people with serious mental health issues.

People who have serious issues will take the help from therapists. Because they have don’t have any options. But going to them can make relax others.

Myth 2: Therapy is not necessary if you have best friends to talk to. Just talking and chit chatting to your family and friends can help you with your mental health issues.

 If you are blessed with caring, supportive family members and friends, by all means, share your feelings, goals, and dreams with those people. They are a big part of your support network, and their insights and encouragement can be very helpful. However, people who already know you might not always be completely objective when listening to you. As they have learnt and have practices. Sometimes they cannot understand the situation so we can to go therapists. So this is a myth which need to be changed.

 Myth 3: Therapists sit behind a desk and take notes while you sit/lie down on a couch.

This is a myth as they are listening to you doesn’t means they will only take the notes. Like a child who is studying and not getting any question so he/she tells the teacher about this so teacher will not make notes rather than she will make him solve the query. Same goes with the therapists.

Myth 4: All therapists want to do is to talk about your childhood / therapists blame the client's upbringing for their situation.

Not necessarily. Many people think that visiting a therapist means digging up old skeletons from your childhood, or talking about how awful your mother was, etc. That is a myth. What you talk about during a therapy session will largely depend on your unique situation and goals. And depending on your goals, you may not actually talk about your past that much. The focus of your therapy is as likely to be your present-day reality and the future that you wish to create.

Myth 5: Therapists can prescribe medication, they adopt techniques like shock therapy etc.

No therapists gives shock therapy. And earlier we didn’t have that knowledge now the government as recognized the importance. Everyone who went for this doesn’t mean that they have to under these therapies. So according to situation we observe and correct ways are provided to them.

 Myth 6: Therapy is very expensive.

In order to receive a license, therapists have to go through a lot of training and years before they can actually work. Lastly, counseling is expensive because there are many bills to pay: Rent and utilities. State licensure fees, each licensure requires annual fees to be paid. We feel that therapy is absolutely worth the cost. While the price might seem high, consider the fact that. But if you feel that it’s expensive so we have helpline also through which we can think it’s affordable.

Myth 7: Therapy sessions consist of only a Q-A form conversation.

Sometimes Q-A are important to know the exact situation but it is not every time. As it not true because it’s like other normal session. People has just make this like a hype. So we need to know it and make people aware about this as much as possible.

Of course, every therapist is different, every client is unique, and every therapist-client relationship is distinct as well—which means that there is no universal description of a therapy session. Some therapists employ dream interpretation in their work. 

Therapy is a valuable tool that can help you to solve problems, set and achieve goals, improve your communication skills, or teach you new ways to track your emotions and keep your stress levels in check. It can help you to build the life, career, and relationship that you want.

Pandemic Experience across the world

June 27, 2020 OVIYA EZHILVANAN 0 Comments

Pandemic Experience  across the world


Compiled by Oviya. E

           This pandemic has made people restricted to their houses. People in different countries suffer a lot because of this pandemic. This webinar helps us understand the situation across the world. The useful information given by a pharmacist from Tanzania made us get to know the easier way to stop the spread of that ‘hooky creature’. Many other people shared the experience they had during the peak of COVID.

           Yashika Tijowala hosted the webinar. Paulo Rubio, a Rheumatologist from Barcelona, Spain shared his experience. An Architect named Amaya from Spain, Krupa Pratap Brahmakstri, a data scientist from California and Sarfraz Ahmed, a chief pharmacist, from Tanzania joined the meeting.

         Sarfraz Ahmed shared his experience and opinions on driving out the virus. Lockdown is completely new for people. Social distancing and other preventive measures have helped in swimming out of this pandemic slowly.

        Krupa, data scientist shared her experience about the pandemic in California. She shared her work experience and the count of COVID cases in her place. The number of positive cases came in after the month of March. Lack of preventive measures made the situation worse. Continuous functioning of grocery shops and other shops amidst the increase in COVID cases led to the rapid increase of the spread.

 Amaya gave an account of the emotional trauma underwent by her fellow citizens due to the demise of their loved ones. Work from home is a good alternative to keep employees satisfied and prevent the spread of the virus.    

 Doctor Paulo Rubio who lost her father during the pandemic complains about not having medical support at the initial level. This became the reason for hyped deaths                             

     No one can predict the end of the virus. It is our duty to stay safe and follow preventive measures. We must not panic but must be cautious. It is our prime responsibility to take care of the senior citizens. We all must be optimistic and strong and be ready to help each other.


June 26, 2020 OVIYA EZHILVANAN 0 Comments


Compiled by Oviya. E


      This webinar on Understanding well being through gender is presented by Empower people to educate the audience about the relationship between health and gender. Ms. Ayushi Gandhi, a social worker explains this and Ms. Khayati joins the webinar as a panelist.

      Ms. Ayushi describes sex as a biological concept and gender as a sociological concept. Man is always considered as aggressive and women as submissive. According to WHO, mental health is defined as the state of well-being in which every individual realizes his / her own potential can cope with normal stresses of life, and work productively and fruitfully to make a contribution to his/her community.

      Health is a state of complete physical, mental, social well being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

      When we look out for a life cycle, we always see a man denoted there whereas a woman’s life cycle is always related to reproduction. Women face many health issues that result in due malnutrition, improper sanitation, and the absence of proper information.

        According to internationally published statistics, depression, anxiety, personality disorder are seen more in women. In rural areas, doctors are often male and this results in discomfort in the minds of women living there. Caste and social status impact people’s accessibility to resources.

   Development is necessary to improve the condition of women. Proper nutrition, infrastructure, presence of women's voices at the institutional and organizational levels are important places to bring in development.

     Ms. Khayati expresses her dissatisfaction  by stating the following:





Ms.Ayushi mentions human trafficking that threatens both genders in social media. She highlights the need to put an end to unsafe abortions and infertility and the violence against women associated with it. She also brings to our notice how religion plays an important role in societal issues.

   To put an end to these issues, conversation at the family level should occur at ease. At the individual level, we must point out the issues rather than normalizing them. 

Kavi Sammelan- Gujarati Special!

June 21, 2020 EMPOWER PEOPLE 0 Comments


Life in Bollywood & the Entertainment Industry

June 20, 2020 AARUSHI JAIN 0 Comments




This is a report on the webinar- Life in Bollywood & the Entertainment Industry. It was held on 20th June, 2020, Saturday from 08:30p.m onwards. This webinar is organized by EMPOWER PEOPLE and Ar. Yashika Tijoriwala handled all the key speakers and interacted with them about the entertainment industry.

The key speakers are as following -:

  • ·         Jitender Pawar (Film Director)Trip to Bhangarh
  • ·         Desh KK Yadav (Film Director)
  • ·         Zameer (Film Director)

 Those involved in providing entertainment: radio and television and films and theater are known for the entertainment industry. According to people life of celebs, actors, actress, spot person, and all people in this industry are living the lavish life. But is it true? No its not. They are also human being. They have a life beyond this industry which is private but it does not remain private.

‘Bollywood’ – the Centre of the Hindi film industry, and a play on Bombay, as Mumbai was once known, and Hollywood – is the main feather in the Indy wood cap, although films made in India’s other regional languages, particularly South Indian languages Telugu and Tamil, are also abundant. Behind the scenes is an army of creative minds, not least a canny band of in-house lawyers, directing the studios and production houses in the legal and commercial side of the movie business. But at this time of lockdown nothing is able to be done.

When unlock 1.0 was started so any kind of shoot is able to restart. And flipkart ad has been started in Delhi. And mother dairy ad has been shot at home as they wanted to do. Even people have started asking for the ideas for shooting from home at this point of time and many filter copy videos have been released. Hopefully listening that from JULY everything will be start again with proper precautions and safety measures.

Life in Bollywood is not so easy as it’s growing globally actors are facing tough competitions within their competitors. Gradually everything is involving so vastly that its being difficult. People judges other life so easily that they forget everything. Privacy is highest issue for them. People are asking for the fresh content and now digital content & OTT is more feasible now. So at the time of lockdown everyone seen everything so need something else.

Future of this industry depends upon the situation & conditions. As earlier the rating was high. As we were living on our choices but now it’s opposite. Prediction is very hard at this point but in green zones it will start again with government measures. Like movies can not been seen in theatres so producer have started using OTT platform. It’s like blessing in disguise. We need to see every moment of opportunity.

Choosing any movie or web series should be based on their content as audience is focusing on their content and appreciate their work and efforts. And at this point of time we should look for the loop hole of opportunity in one of the most difficult period and explore the options. And in the starting we had a video which was directed by Jitender Pawar about the actors and challenges. So we should consider that even in our mind. If life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor.

So in the crux I would like to say that everyone faces challenges and after that they become successful and get fame after their hard work. So never stop yourself and your ideas even at the worse situation even.

Memories pierce the heart: Homoeroticism, Bollywood style.

June 19, 2020 OVIYA EZHILVANAN 0 Comments

Memories pierce the heart: Homoeroticism, Bollywood style.

Compiled by Oviya. E

Empower people has come up with another thought-provoking webinar. This webinar takes us through a journey where we see a different perspective of the normalities. The speaker of the day is Mr. Raj Rao, who is a writer, poet, academician, and queer activist. His notable works are hostel room 131; Madame, give me my sex, and the Boyfriend. Badal Thakker, an architect and an activist, is our panelist and Hridaya Ajgaonkar hosts the webinar.

Mr. Raj Rao discusses his article, which was published in the Queer Asian Cinema. He explains his perspective with the help of Amitabh Bachchan’s songs of the 1970s and 1980s.

He introduces a few critics who criticize and rise ideologies about gay films and about Queer society. Alexander Doty, in his work, Making things perfectly clear, has mentioned that “mainstream films arrest to straight audiences have greater potent for clear readings that gay films arrest to a gay audience.” Shohini Gosh, in her Monograph on film “fire”, quotes that in Hindi cinema, the vocabulary used for defining or portraying friendship and love often overlap. Mr.Rao mentions Eve Sedgwick, a queer theorist.

Renee Gerrard, a critic, has given insights on Gender Asymmetry and the Erotic triangle. His theory is that “in any erotic rivalry, the bond that links both the rivals is as potent as the bond that links either o the two rivals to their beloved. The bond of rivalry and love differently as they are experienced is equally powerful and in many senses the equivalent of each other.

Mr. Rao highlights the fact that in Hindi cinema, touch is gender-neutral and not gender-specific. This is not portrayed as sexual to the mainstream audience but it makes an impact on the queer community.

Mr.Rao uses Bachchan’s film songs in his presentation to bring to light, how homosexuality thrives in covert yet recognized places in Indian culture. The main reason behind highlighting Amitabh Bachchan is that he changed the grammar of Hindi Cinema. He brought in Action films apart from romantic films. His films often redefine male bonding.

The first song he presents is “Diye jalte hai” from the film “Namak Haram”. This song picturizes the cross-class friendship between Amitabh Bachchan and Rajesh Khanna. Mr.Rao puts forth his ideology that the lyrics of this song could easily be used for a song describing the love between a man and a woman.

The next song he quotes is “Yaari hai imaan mera” from the film “zanjeer”. He highlights the use of the word “Yaar”. The mainstream and queer audience perceives the picturization of the affection shown between Pran and Amitabh Bachchan differently.

The lyrics are as follows:

Yaari Hai Meri Imaan Mera Yaar Meri Zindagi
Yaar Ho Bando Se Ye Oh
Yaar Ho Bando Se Ye Sabse Badi Hai Bandagi
Yaari Hai!
Yaari Hai Meri Imaan Mera Yaar Meri Zindagi

“Bane chahe Dushman” from the film “Dostana” is the next song described by Mr.Rao. He feels that no other love song can have better romantic lyrics than those belonging to this song. Those lyrics are as follows:

Pata koyi poochhe
To kehte hain hum
Ke ek duje ke dil me rehte
Hain hum rehte hain hum

Such songs, when staged before the audience in the west, are considered as songs that portray homosexual friendship.

In the song, “Mere dost Kissa yeh kya ho Gaya”, characters Vijay and Ravi are rivals yet they portray a lot of passion among them. This is the best example of the love triangle. Reduced importance is given to the heroine which is an outcome of the patriarchal community that still strive in our country.

Mr.Badal contributes many of his ideologies about the queer community. He is an avid reader of the queer community. He has read Mr.Rao’s BomGay and he appreciates its uniqueness. He is astonished by Mr.Rao’s perspective of approaching Amitabh Bachchan’s movies. He feels there is no queer space in our society and hence feels that it is important to introduce queer ideologies.

This webinar brings out a very different perspective of Hindi cinema. It is a webinar to be watched by both the mainstream and queer audience.


Kavi Sammelan (Online Poetry Session)

June 14, 2020 EMPOWER PEOPLE 0 Comments


Queering Regional Celluloid

June 12, 2020 Indrani Kukkadapu 0 Comments


Queering Regional Celluloid

                Streamed live on;June ,12th,2020

The following webinar report is about the negotiation on "Queering Regional Celluloid" topic. The webinar is take up by the Empower people with the moderator named Hridaya tijoriwala. The participants to brief about the webinar are Sachin Labade (Assistant professor, Department of English Mumbai University,PhD scholar in Queer Cinema) Satya Rai Nagpaul ( Cinematographer:Aligarh, Chouthi koot, Zinda Bhaag,Ghoomketu,Newborns,Angry Ghode Da Daan,Gattu). Founder and working member.Sampoorna[A network of trans* and Interse Indians].respectively. He shared insights on the process of creating the queer cinema, sensitive representation, challenges of the industry,what this representation means to the community, mainstream representation comparison, how he sees queer cinema changing in the future and more.

This webinar mainly describes about homosexuality of women and the webinar mainly covers the regional languages like Marathi Bengali Malayalam etc. With the help of movies which were practically screened on social media like films, movies by the presentation of homosexuality within female female really disrupted the view of people. Doctor said this explains various movies of languages which are really disrupted to screen out with the topic of homosexuality. Here respected sir explains about the homosexuality and reason behind the getting like those type of ideas and the particular engage is really amazing. Here we can get the most acceptable reason behind the idea of homosexuality is absolutely by the current world and thoughts what usually gets in that age.

Homosexuality in films really distracts the ones view. They are lot of films which are really involved with topic of homosexuality and the mostly highlighting the woman with the idea of it . It's truly hard to find it in current scenario but previously like nearly in the time of the1980s 1990s days was really sad thing the found.

The earliest references to gay theme in Malayalam cinema was 'Randu Penkuttikal' in 1978. Based on a story by Nanda Kumar, director Mohan narrated the obsessive love of a woman for a danseuse. There are homoerotic references in 'Deshadanakkili Karayaarilla' (1986) and the more recent and famous 'Sanchaaram' (2004), in Rithu (2009) and 'Paranja Katha' (2010).

In Tamil film 'Vettaiyaadu Vilayaadu' (2006), two men molested inside a prison by a gang of hijdas take on a life of crime. In the relatively conservative Tamil creative medium, director Venkat Prabhu managed to slip in a gay character in his film 'Goa'.

Cinema is undoubtedly the greatest thing to have happened to the queer movement in India. Doubted, ridiculed and criminalized for centuries, the sexual minorities stepped out from the shadow of invisibility after 2000 to claim their rightful place in popular culture. What followed was a plethora of films that were finally sympathetic to their plight.

Meant perhaps to free them from the shackles of strict convention, Madhur Bhandarkar's 'Page 3' (2005), Anurag Basu's 'Life in a... Metro' (2007), Reema Kagti's 'Honeymoon Travels' (2007), Karan Razdan's 'Girlfriend' (2004) and Parvati Balagopalan's 'Rules - Pyar Ka Superhit Formula' (2003) propagated the same gay stereotypes the filmmakers were trying to avoid. The mainstream has largely let down queer cinema.

But a whole host of films - shorts, documentaries and features - around this time were trying to understand the cultural phenomena of the queer movement. Few among those were 'Tedhi Lakeer' (2004), 'Teen Deewarein' (2003), 'My Brother Nikhil', Marathi film 'Thang' (2006), 'Touch of Pink' (2004), 'Stag' (2001), Water (2005), Yours Emotionally (2006), 'Piku Bhalo Aachhey' (Bengali, 2004), 'Happy Hookers' (2006), 'I Can't Think Straight' (2007) and 'Luck by Chance' (2009).

In the last twenty years the queer identity has come to be taken more seriously in arts. Books had men declaring their sexual identity in no uncertain terms while cinema struggled to strike a balance between the morally acceptable lines the makers still complied to with the changing times.

But films nevertheless shied away from any serious reference to homosexuality. Many consider a man's love for a clearly androgynous Paintal dressed as a woman in 'Rafoo Chakkar' (1975) to be cinema's first reference to homosexuality. The lines defining genders get blurred and the spurned lover accepts that 'no one's perfect' in a sexual insight amazingly cynical for its time in the climax.

Since then there have been parallel work in Malayalam, Bengali and Marathi cinema on same sex love. The 1982 Marathi film 'Umbartha' hinted at a lesbian relationship between two inmates of a remand home.

The third gender played a significant role in Indian cinema, mainly in the form of eunuchs who invaded homes of women who have given birth to a male son. But very few serious films tried to focus on the conflicts and politics of their colonised living.

In this context, the contributions of gay rights activists and filmmakers Sridhar Rangayan, Onir and Rituparno Ghosh to the genre have been immense.

Compiled by; Indrani Kukkadapu.

Pandemics and Historical change

June 11, 2020 Indrani Kukkadapu 0 Comments


 Pandemics and historical change

               Streamed live on; June ,11,2020.

The webinar is about the "Pandemics and Historical Change" . It was hosted by the Empower people with the panelists named Anirudh Deshpande ( assistant professor, department of history, University of Delhi). And also we had  Matiur Rehman Khan ( assistant professor, department of history,PGDAV college {eve}, University of Delhi) to express their views and to share.

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization announced that the COVID-19 virus was officially a pandemic after barreling through 114 countries in three months and infecting over 118,000 people. And the spread wasn’t anywhere near finished.

COVID-19 is caused by a novel coronavirus—a new coronavirus strain that has not been previously found in people. Symptoms include respiratory problems, fever and cough, and can lead to pneumonia and death. Like SARS, it’s spread through droplets from sneezes.

The first reported case in China appeared November 17, 2019, in the Hubei Province, but went unrecognized. Eight more cases appeared in December with researchers pointing to an unknown virus. 

Many learned about COVID-19 when ophthalmologist Dr. Li Wenliang defied government orders and released safety information to other doctors. The following day, China informed WHO and charged Li with a crime. Li died from COVID-19 just over a month later.

Without a vaccine available, the virus spread beyond Chinese borders to nearly every country in the world. By December 2020, it had infected more than 75 million people and led to more than 1.6 million deaths worldwide. The number of new cases was growing faster than ever, with more than 500,000 reported each day on average.

Most civilizations have suffered deadly pandemics; some have been destroyed by them. From the Plague of Athens, which denied that city-state an early victory in their war with Sparta, to the Black Death, which killed some 40 percent of Europeans in the mid-fourteenth century, history suggests deadly communicable diseases impact societies in consistent ways.

Today, political questions are already being asked of leaders and other public authorities leading responses to the virus. Modern communications mean it is now much easier to compare these performances: relative failure is more obvious than in earlier centuries. Societies led by elderly men—the demographic most at risk for Covid-19—and countries that enjoyed plentiful revenue from oil exports before the virus, face a particular risk of instability. Coupled with generally poor health care systems, the political impact of the virus may be greatest in the least developed countries, a fact not yet apparent because the coronavirus spread to richer countries first.

Quarantine and isolation, as well as the failure of previously respected models of thinking to anticipate a pandemic, have often given rise to superstition. Some of this has manifested as spurious notions on what might prevent or cure a disease. Woolen cholera belts, for example, were thought to ward off the waterborne disease, which killed millions in the nineteenth century. And even those who escaped often changed their behavior in recognition that they may have a very short time to live.

In 2020, Covid-19 has provided fresh opportunities for the spread of systematic disinformation and accidental misinformation. While the internet and other media mean we are less detached from each other than the populations that went through previous pandemics, we should still expect a rise in non-conventional beliefs—one of the most bizarre so far is the entirely spurious suggestion that 5G technology somehow causes the coronavirus. How much these views can be confined to the fringe remains uncertain.

While solidarity can increase within a community, those deemed to be outside it are often blamed for spreading the disease. The Black Death in the 1340s, for example, resulted in renewed anti-Semitism, much of it murderous, and hostility toward Romani, pilgrims, and beggars. Lepers, some of whom had skin lesions that looked like plague buboes, were particularly ostracized. Almost all pandemics, from ancient times to the present, bring a suspicion of foreigners, and people in quarantine have often been the victims of violence. In the coming months, most democracies are likely to initiate thorough investigations into all aspects of the disease. We should hope their reports assign blame and responsibility in a responsible and fair way.

Historical pandemics had profound economic effects, especially those that killed substantial numbers of people, laborers were able to demand much higher wages, and the rental value of agricultural land declined. Food prices also fell, although the cost of some imported goods rose. Several plagues and pandemics have seen the destruction of wealth and redistribution of assets, usually with a larger impact on richer people, and thus reduced inequality.

While Covid-19 is not expected to kill nearly as high a proportion of people as historical pandemics, profound economic effects are expected, nonetheless. Already, global supply chains are being questioned, “just-in-time” delivery systems are amplifying economic shockwaves, and migrant labor is being turned away. Globalization seems to be going into reverse. Some key workers, especially in the health and care sectors, may end up with higher wages, potentially regarded as hazard pay, while certain sectors may suffer long-term problems, including restaurants, airlines, and some mass-spectator sports. It is naive to expect a vaccine rolled out in 2021 could bring back the economic ecosystem lost to the virus this year. Meanwhile, the unprecedented levels of government debt and monetary stimulus taken on to shore up the private sector could well lead to higher inflation for goods and services in the 2020s, just as the stimulus after the 2008 stoked asset-price inflation.

Although pandemics can have a leveling impact economically, socially they often impact some groups much more than others. Generally, those who have benefited from good nutrition have fared much better than others. Those who have treated victims of a pandemic have always been at greater risk—undertakers and gravediggers throughout the centuries, monks and nuns who offered respite during the Black Death, and medical workers in contemporary times. 
It has already been widely documented that Covid-19 is most lethal to elderly people: the median age of death in some countries is around 80. Men may be dying from the illness twice as much as women, and those with some underlying conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, and hypertension, are also more vulnerable, as are people who smoke. Markedly higher death rates among everyone one has also been reported, although why this is has not yet been completely explained.

Although the lockdowns that began in many countries in March were celebrated by some as an opportunity for people to undertake new cultural or arts projects, the quality of these efforts may well be varied. People may prefer to consign the past away rather than dwell on it: after weeks of relentless media coverage on Covid-19, books about the pandemic may miss their audience, for the time being at least. We should expect the full cultural impact of the pandemic to be delayed. It may take several years for the abnormality of a current pandemic to be reflected in art and culture.

Compiled by; Indrani Kukkadapu.

How KATPUTLI Artists fighting covid-19.

June 10, 2020 Indrani Kukkadapu 0 Comments


     How KATPUTLI Artists fighting covid-19

        Streamed live on:June,10,2020.

The webinar is about the the issues confronted by KATPUTLI Artists during pandemic. It was hosted by the Empower people with the moderator named Kyati Arora and also we had The Rashtra Puraskar Winner named Puran Bhatt. There also guests like Kishore Bhatt, Babllu Bhatt,Pintu Bhatt, to share their views.

Even when we reach a new normal, the future in Kathputli seems to remain bleak. Until the public functions and wedding seasons resume, the artists will be unable to perform any events. Along with donations, the community is attempting to adapt and is in search of more platforms that would enable them to showcase their skills, perhaps in a virtual medium.Even when we reach a new normal, the future in Kathputli seems to remain bleak. Until the public functions and wedding seasons resume, the artists will be unable to perform any events. Along with donations, the community is attempting to adapt and is in search of more platforms that would enable them to showcase their skills, perhaps in a virtual medium.

This time of year would have been the lucrative wedding season, but the spread of COVID-19 has locked them out of their work, which essentially involves social gatherings or street crowds. Their already fragile incomes gone, they are facing hunger due to limited government support, and a few of them have appealed for donations through a crowdfunding portal.

With 2,800 families cramped together, each living in a one-room lodging made of lightweight aerocon panels and using community taps and toilets, the residents in the Anand Parbat camp also worry about being easy targets for the spread of COVID-19.

The lockdown may have been lifted and almost all sectors of the economy may have reopened, but for folk singers, kachhi ghodi dancers, kathputli makers and theatre artists, the fight for survival continues. As these custodians of Rajasthan’s colourful cultural heritage struggle to get two meals a day, the government has no plans to assuage their suffering.

The income of these artists varied from day to day based on the number of people who visited. However, due to the pandemic, their daily earnings fell all the way down to zero since their only mode of income was now non-existent.

Looking at the desperation and hopelessness among the residents of Kathputli, Vijay Maitri, an activist and theatre performer himself stepped in to help the community from failing. Vijay has been fighting for the rights of the Kathputli colony for the past 10 years.

In addition to the lack of amenities, the facilities that are provided also lack quality. The taps present in the community bathrooms in the transit camp are not connected to a water supply.

Even when we reach a new normal, the future in Kathputli seems to remain bleak. Until the public functions and wedding seasons resume, the artists will be unable to perform any events. Along with donations, the community is attempting to adapt and is in search of more platforms that would enable them to showcase their skills, perhaps in a virtual medium.

Compiled by; Indrani Kukkadapu

Vriskhayurveda in post COVID environment

June 08, 2020 Indrani Kukkadapu 0 Comments


 Vriskhayurveda in Post COVID Environment

                          Streamed live on;June,08,2020
                     Compiled by; Indrani Kukkadapu

The following below presented webinar report is about the Vriskhayurveda,how it helps during covid-19. The webinar is hosted by Tanuja Singh. And the most significantly the panel representative who made us well acknowledged about vriskhayurveda is Dr. Sunitha T. Pandey who is from Department of Agronomy, College of Agriculture,GBPUAT; Co-ordinator-Natural Farming Reasearch; Executive secretary,Asian Agri- History Foundation,GBPUAT. We can have the youtube link for the webinar below: 

The hopes of tracing any independent text of Vrikshayurveda were given up by scholars, till Y L Nene (Chairman, Asian Agri-History Foundation) procured a manuscript of Vrikshayurveda of Surapala.

The manuscript is written in an old form of Nagari script. The script of the manuscript represents, most probably, the stage immediately preceding the modem form of Nagari. The script consists of sixty pages with margin on both sides. Each page contains six lines in general (occasionally five or seven). There are about thirty characters in each line written boldly with a thick pointed pen.

Brhatsamhita of Varahamihira of the sixth century also contains a chapter titled Vrikshayurveda. It also contains chapters on allied subjects such as divining groundwater, productivity and non-productivity of land as indicated by natural vegetation, etc. However, beyond establishing the antiquity of the sastra, it cannot give any definite clues to any full-fledged, independent texts on Vrikshayurveda.

An anthological compilation of Sarngadharapaddhati (written by Sarngadhara), belonging to the thirteenth century, is yet another ancient text which in its chapter "Upavanavinoda" deals with an allied subject, viz., "arbori-horticulture". The chapter discusses such topics as planting, soil, nourishment of plants, plant diseases and remedies, groundwater resources, etc. Thus it shares with Vrikshayurveda of Surapala almost all the topics. Many verses are identical and several others, although worded differently have an identical content. In spite of the striking resemblance between Upavanavinoda and Vrikshayurveda of Surapala, the former cannot be considered as a complete and independent text on Vrikshayurveda.

Surapal's Vrikshayurveda is a systematic composition starting with the glorification of trees and tree planting. It then proceeds to discuss various topics connected with the science of plant life such as procuring, preserving, and treating of seeds before planting; preparing pits for planting saplings; selection of soil; method of watering; nourishments and fertilizers; plant diseases and plant protection from internal and external diseases; layout of a garden; agricultural and horticultural wonders; groundwater resources; etc. The topics are neatly divided into different sections and are internally correlated. The author has expressed indebtedness to the earlier scholars but claims that in writing the present text he was guided by his own reason.

All these observations lead one to accept the text as an independent, full-fledged work on the subject of Vrikshayurveda. Sadhale informs that there are frequent references to this science in ancient Indian literature such as Atharvaveda, Brhatsamhita of Varahamihira, Sarngadharapaddhati of Sarngadhara, etc. which bring out the botanical and agricultural aspects; works such as the Samhitas of Caraka and Susruta which bring out the medicinal aspect; and works such as Grhyasutras, Manusmrti, Arthasastra of Kautilya, Sukraniti, Krishisangraha of Parasara, Kamandakiya Nitisara, Buddhist Jatakas, Puranas (Matsya, Varaha, Padma, Agni, etc.).

The colophon of the manuscript mentions Surapala as the writer of the text. He is described as a scholar in the court of Bhimapala. Surapala is stated to be "Vaidyavidyavarenya", a prominent physician.

In post covid-19,the people missed out the immunity which is the main significant thing we should had. In vriskhayurveda, we can get the immunity through the plants. The explanation is all about that the immunity which we get from the plants made us stronger and healthier. As this is known that not so many can have knowledge regarding vriskhayurveda. Not even in agricultural Universities,colleges etc mentioning about it. Ancients,did lot of reasearchs and pour themselves to utilize the facilities which we get from plants.

For a particular disease like cough,cold, there are some special available medicines which we get from plants. Behind this,there are lot of efforts to sort out all those. And there is 100% percent gurantee with no side effects in these.

Through the uttarakhand government , trying to introduce the vriskhayurveda course with less cost charges.
The queries regarding webinar negotiated topic are about the genetic produced seeds are good for the usage in fields...Do vriskhayurveda supports it or not?

The explanation for this is absolutely not. Organic farming is the thing which nature itself presents. Even for that there are specific methods which we already know that cross production etc.

Regarding the whole webinar, is about the
Vriskhayurveda how it could helps to improve immunity during covid-19.

Kavi Sammelan (Online Poetry Session)

June 07, 2020 EMPOWER PEOPLE 0 Comments


Webinar Series: Fight against Racism amidst the pandemic

June 07, 2020 Gaurika Kalsi 0 Comments

 Report by: Gaurika Kalsi

The Empower People Organization has organized a webinar series to support and
help people towards their overall empowerment in these harsh times of the
The following report is based on one of those webinars.
The topic of the panel discussion was “Fight against Racism amidst the Pandemic”.
It was conducted on 7 th June 2020 at 09:30pm(IST).
Panellists for the session were Mr. Shafiq R Khan (Social activist& founder of
Empower People),Ms. Durga Dingari (Freelance writer, RJ at TORI,Beadwork
entrepreneur), and Mr. Chaitanya (Video journalist,NYTimes).
Ms.Durga started the panel discussion with the introduction of panellists
 and the news update of police brutality in USA.

Some of the key points of Ms Durga’s discussion:
  •  George Floyd’s case
  •  USA protest amidst Covid-19
  •  “Still I rise” poem by Maya Angelo
  •  Racism in the US
  •  Issues in minorities
  •  Difficulties in employment
  •  Statistics of police killing

Some of the key points of by Mr. Chaitanya:
  •  Be consistently anti-racist rather than just “not racist”
  •  Existence of the racism & denial
  •  Lack of acknowledgement of the efforts and struggles of African-American protests & resultant privileges that Asian obtain in US
  •  Immigration act 1965& Civil rights act 1968
  •  Aftereffects of slavery
  •  Indian’s fairness standards and casteism
  •  Racist comments

Some of the key points of by Mr.Shafiq :
  •  Racism in India
  •  Fairness obsession
  •  Lack of anti-racism movement
  •  Dalit &OBC movements
  •  Muslims and religious conflicts
  •  Indo-Africans
  •  Personal experiences
  •  Cast, religion, faith, physical appearance and language judgements in India

Webinar Series: Environmental concerns during COVID-19

June 06, 2020 Gaurika Kalsi 0 Comments

 Report by: Gaurika Kalsi 

The Empower People Organization has organized a webinar series to support, educate and encourage people towards their overall empowerment in these harsh times of the pandemic. 

The following report is based on one of those webinars. 

The topic of the panel discussion was “Environmental concerns during COVID-19”. It was conducted on 6th June,2020 at 08:30pm. 

Panelists for the evening were: 

  • Ms. Yashika Tijoriwala (Moderator) 

  • Mr. Anant Joshi (Project manager, International Institute of Energy Conservation) 

  • Mr.Ar Rahul Shrikhande (GRIHA Trainer& Evaluator, Asst. Professor,VESCOA) 

  • Mr.Stalin Dayanand (Conservationist & Director, NGO Vanashakti) 

  • Mr.ArJiyan Pattarwala (LEED AP BD+C IGBC AP GRIHA CP) 

  • Ms.ArPRAJAKTA ADHIKARI (Researcher& Environment Architect) 


Ms. Yashika Tijoriwala (Moderator) began the panel discussion with pleasant news of a reduction in carbon level with the lockdown. 

Key points by Mr. Anant Joshi (Project manager, International Institute of Energy Conservation): 

  • Cleaner air and water (Improvement in the quality of Yamuna) 
  • Wildlife in cities 
  • Declination in carbon levels  
  • Maintenance of the positive changes 
  • Explanation of Green house gases 
  • Source of greenhouse gases and it’s domino effect 
  • Short term Vs Long term initiatives 
  • Targets of renewable resources 
  • Decentralized power generation 
  • Background pollution 
  • Public transportation 

Areas covered by Mr.ArJiyan Pattarwala (LEED AP BD+C IGBC AP GRIHA CP): 

  • People might not maintain the environment improvement as soon they start with their regular life.   
  • Energy & irrigation efficiency 
  • Diesel cars Vs Electric cars  
  • Need to build awareness & promote the education of the subject matter in particular 
  • Green rating: percentage-wise authorization 
  • House gardening 
  • Turning the term sustainability into responsibility 
  • Ola and uber's new policies 


Areas covered by Mr.Stalinayanand (Conservationist & Director, NGO Vanashakti): 

  • Water bodies(Kolkata, Haridwar) 
  • AQI of Delhi 
  • Global warming 
  • Irrigation & Ice meltdown 
  • Suppression of environmental health in the path of economic growth 
  • Infrastructural projects are ongoing 
  • Solar energy 
  • Dessert locusts & ecological faults 
  • Real changes rather than just acknowledgment 


Areas covered by Ms.Ar. PRAJAKTA ADHIKARI (Researcher& Environment Architect): 

  • Nature’s control 
  • Government’s responsibilities towards concrete change 
  • Environmental disruption & over channelization of resources 
  • Outdoor Vs Indoor air quality  
  • Air ventilation & people’s conception of covid-19 
  • Respiratory system &house activities 
  • Carpooling 
  • Cautions for air, dust, pollution particles in the house 
  • Home plantation  


Questions by Ms. Yashika Tijoriwala (Moderator): 

  • What is Greenhouse gases 
  • How to reduce carbon levels post lockdown 
  • Authorization of green rating 
  • Websites for updates 
  • Infrastructural projects 
  • Renewable resources 
  • Work from home and air quality 
  • Larger policy decisions 
  • Sustainability & sustainable living