I wrote this for Swaddle on July 8 2018. Here is the original article. I based it primarily on the book ‘Reproductive Restraints: Birth Control in India, 1877-1947’ by historian Sanjam Ahluwalia of Northern Arizona University Below are some excerpts: Birth control began in India not as a free choice by individuals to manage their fertility, but as… Continue reading The “oppressive” history of family planning and population control in India
I am reproducing here an answer I wrote on Quora to the question “What’s your message to girls who equate smoking and drinking with women empowerment?” The original answer can be found here. [I don’t have any ‘message’ to anyone. I am writing here mainly to relay some of my thoughts on these issues and… Continue reading Navigating gender equality and public health when it comes to smoking
Amartya Sen introduced the term ‘missing women’, in the early 1990s, as a highly effective way of talking about the impact of gender discrimination in societies. This work is perhaps the finest example of Sen’s unique style of blending hard economics with ethics, social sensibilities, and humanitarianism, as well as advocating for social equality and… Continue reading The ‘missing women’ of India
This was published in The Swaddle on October 1 2017. Here is the link and below is an extract: The government, having already displayed interest in addressing this issue, must arrive at an evolving strategy through a general consensus of patient advocates, doctors, nurses and midwives, public health experts, and social workers. It could begin… Continue reading Targeting doctors and hospitals is an unproductive ‘solution’ for unnecessary C-sections – it is time we enlisted them as partners
This was published in The Swaddle on September 3. Here is the link, and below is an extract. “One way to do that is to expand the number of trained abortion practitioners. Women in India undergo unsafe abortions for several reasons, but a major factor is the unavailability of safe and legal abortion services in most… Continue reading Why the MTP Bill 2014 favors AYUSH docs and nurses as abortion providers
This was published in ‘The Better India’ on May 6 2017. Here is the link, and below is an excerpt. New research from Harvard Medical School in the US, where too the ‘profit motive’ gets disproportionately blamed, emphasizes what could be called system factors: limited resources, high workload, limited motivation, and limited accountability. These put… Continue reading What we can learn from hospitals which have successfully brought down their C-section rates
Using hypothetical Facebook conversations and some satire, I have attempted to highlight the challenges faced by India’s poor in maternal care. 1. Almost 70% of Indians live in villages, and a majority of villages have poor govt health infrastructure and unreliable electricity supply. People manage somehow, but these ‘jugaads’ are dangerous & unsustainable. Besides, the… Continue reading India’s Maternal Care System, Presented via Facebook
This article appeared in Quartz India on March 02, 2016. Here is the link. Below is an extract: By and large, the most persuasive argument for making midwives more mainstream in India is a feminist one. It can hardly be contested that the current system in which women receive care here is heavily biased towards… Continue reading Shunned for Years, Can Trained Midwives Fix India’s Maternity Mess?