Society

Mohammad Irshad, a person with a disability and a native of Bengaluru, when asked about the current state of accessibility for the disabled in the city, said: “I have never been to a public washroom”. Irshad, diagnosed with a condition called Spina Bifida, where a  baby's spinal cord fails to develop properly, has been a wheelchair user for as long as he can remember. Irshad believes that the lack of accessibility in Bengaluru stems from the fact that the public and policymakers are unaware of the types of disabilities that exist. He believes accessibility for people with disabilities can only…

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In the sweltering Chennai summer heat, Amala endearingly helps her friend Pavithra who is fretting and nervous about riding a bicycle through the busiest roads of Arumbakkam. To add to her stress, the ordeal is unfolding at 9 pm, a time highly unusual for women to commute casually in Chennai. While Pavithra anxiously pedals, constantly shifting uncomfortably in her seat, with several eyes watching her every move, Amala and her friends join Pavithra in solidarity. They cheer her on, as she slowly and gradually adjusts her eyes to the dizzying traffic and steadies herself to a comfortable pace.  Cycling in…

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"Many people from villages across Tamil Nadu came to Chennai to make a living. They moved here with the hope of improving the standard of living for their families and providing good education to their children. These people, who migrated in small groups from rural parts, eventually settled along the banks of rivers or water bodies. They built small huts to reside. The huts were prone to catching fire suddenly at any time and so the area came to be called Thideer Nagar," says S Kathirvelan, a 60-year-old resident of Thideer Nagar in Saidapet. But L Vijaya, a resident of…

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Last year India witnessed the highest number of deaths by suicide — 1.64 lakh. And, these are only the reported deaths!  The stigma that is associated with suicide makes it even worse. As a result, large number of incidents remain unreported in our country. It may not be an exaggeration to say that the figure above presents an incomplete picture. As per the latest NCRB report, daily wage labourers continue to be the most vulnerable population to suicide. Suicide rates among housewives and students are also on the rise. The COVID pandemic has further aggravated the situation for people across…

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Translated by Sandhya Raju விளிம்பு நிலை மற்றும் பொருளாதாரத்தில் பின் தங்கியுள்ள மக்கள், சிக்கலான சட்ட அமைப்பில் சிக்கிக்கொள்ளும்  நிலையை வெகுவாக வெளிக்கொணர்ந்தது ஜெய்பீம் திரைப்படம். செங்கனி என்ற கதாபாத்திரத்திற்கு ஆதரவாக சந்துரு என்ற வழக்கறிஞர் பணியாற்றினார்.    ஆனால், நிஜ வாழ்க்கையில்  இவர்களின் நிலை என்ன?   அரசு அங்கீகாரம் பெற்ற தமிழ்நாடு மாநில சட்ட சேவைகள் ஆணையம் அல்லது மாவட்ட சட்ட சேவைகள் ஆணையத்தில் உதவி பெற ஒவ்வொரு நபருக்கும் அரசியலைப்புப் படி உரிமை உள்ளது.  “இலவச சட்ட உதவி என்பது அரசு அளிக்கும் தொண்டு அல்ல. இது அனைத்து மக்களுக்கான  அடிப்படை உரிமை,” என்கிறார் சென்னை உயர்நீதி மன்றத்தின் வழக்கறிஞர் எஸ் ஜோதிலக்ஷ்மி, 2019-20 ல் இலவச சட்ட உதவி வழக்கறிஞராக இவர் நியமிக்கப்பட்டார்.  அரசு வழங்கும் சேவை குறித்து பலரருக்கு விழிப்புணர்வு இல்லை, என இந்தக் கட்டுரைக்காக நாம் சந்தித்த வழக்கறிஞர்கள் கூறினர்.  அதன் நோக்க பயனை…

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The recent Kannada blockbuster 777 Charlie attempts to tell a story that can change hearts and perceptions about dogs; Indie dogs in particular. The film, directed by Kiranraj K is the story of Dharma, a man who suffers from terrible trauma having lost his entire family in a road accident. Dharma, played by Rakshit Shetty, becomes a recluse and attaches no significance to his life till a rambunctious, pesky pup shows up at his doorstep his life upside down for good. Dharma takes in the abandoned pup Charlie. In turn, Charlie gives him a sense of purpose in life. Making…

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The youth in Bengaluru’s many slums are caught in a vicious cycle. Of poverty, of lack of access to education and skill development resulting in their inability to get decent employment. These are key factors that lead to substance abuse issues among these youngsters as they grow up in one of the most unequal 'global' cities of India. The trajectory of young people in Bengaluru’s Rajendra Nagar slum, located in the vicinity of the high-income Koramangala neighbourhood, and the choices they make in the midst of the high-alcoholism issue in this informal settlement is not uncommon. The presence of a…

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The notion of retirement is a rather complicated one. On one hand, it is the long-awaited rest after an extensive, tenured career. On the other, it could mark a decrease in cognitive activity which can lead to an array of ailments such as Dementia, Alzheimer’s and Depression. While a lot of research has gone into the effects of cognitive ageing, very little is being done about how to keep retirees cognitively active. Additionally, with the advent of modern medicine, individual lifespans continue to increase. This creates a sizable segment of retirees who have a lot of free time. And this…

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Mumbai's fisherfolk share a strong camaraderie that has only strengthened over time amidst threats to their livelihood. For the last several years, they have complained about dwindling catch due to various infrastructural projects. Some left the occupation decades ago for upward mobility and more are now contemplating leaving. What remains unchanged in the face of adversity is the enthusiasm and celebrations around Narali Purnima, the annual coconut festival celebrated on August 11th this year. The festival is of great significance to the fishers from the Koli community, the city’s earliest inhabitants. From Sassoon Docks where boats unload the day's catch. The dock…

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During the inaugural speech of the 44th FIDE Chess Olympiad in Chennai, Chief Minister Stalin noted that of the 73 Indian grandmasters, 26 were from Tamil Nadu. “That means 36% of Indian grandmasters are from Tamil Nadu. It is a game of intelligence and mathematics and Chennai can be rightly called the chess capital of India,” he said. But while cricket and chess are held in high regard in the state, with the necessary conditions for success, a look at other sports in the city presents a sorry picture. The impact of COVID-19 and the absence of support has hampered…

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