IPH conducted a film festival called "Manatarang" on the theme of mental health from 8th to 10th Oct 2010. This festival was organized by AVAHAN, the audio-visual unit of IPH to commemorate IPH's 20 years in the field of mental health.
The idea was to use a popular medium like cinema to create awareness about the medical and psycho-social aspects of various psychological disorders and mental health issues. The focus was not just on disorders; but a more comprehensive one on wellness and mental health.
The format of the festival was film screenings followed by discussion sessions. Eminent personalities from the field of cinema, mental health, and media like Dr. Mohan Agashe, Ashok Rane, Sumitra Bhave, Sunil Sukhtankar, Awdhoot Paralkar, Dr. Anand Nadkarni, Dr. Shubha Thatte, Dr. Anuradha Sovani participated in the discussion sessions.
The audience reaction and participation in the festival was enthusiastic and very encouraging.
It has been decided to hold the festival every alternate year henceforth.
Films screened at the festival
Innaugural film: Devrai
Devrai is the story of Shesh Shahi, a brilliant but eccentric man . While living with his family in a village in the Konkan region of the state of Maharashtra in India , Shesh becomes increasingly obsessed with a small patch of forest near his home which he calls as "Devrai" (meaning 'sacred grove' in Marathi) and starts o feel that the perfect harmony between the biological factors in Devrai offer a solution to the chaos which he perceives in the outside world . He is later diagnosed with schizophrenia and his younger sister Seena Gore tries to cure him by seeking professional help
A biopic of Temple Grandin, an autistic woman who has become one of the top scientists in the humane livestock handling industry. She did not speak until age four and had difficulty right through high school, mostly in dealing with people. Her mother was very supportive as were some of her teachers. She is noted for creating her 'hug box', widely recognized today as a way of relieving stress and her humane design for the treatment of cattle in processing plants. Today, she is a professor at Colorado State University.
Anche libero va bene
This film is about a young girl and her adolescent brother staying with their father and trying to come to terms with the fact that the mother has left them for her rich lover. When mother enters the family again, the dimensions change and she leaves them again. A beautiful depiction of emotional upheaval in the boy's life.
This short film is based on a story by acclaimed writer, Bharat Sasane. A brilliant depiction of 2 old persons, friends (friendship of 70 years) - sharing their kind of 'fun'. With the shadow of death hovering over them, they are assuring each other that 'they are not afraid of death and ready for it'.
Uncaging the Body
Attempting to explore some of the most poignant and ironic experiences that people struck with Parkinson's go through, uncaging the Body tries to put into perspective the communicative crossroads at which the body and mind find themselves trapped in. The film showcases these brave hearts who continue to live their lives with courage and dignity, in spite of the limitations of their predicament
Trapped", the title is as mysterious as the film is, as it unfolds. Two men are trapped in the prison of their respective needs.The question one asks oneself in the end is, "Who is really trapped?" The film depicts the devastation caused by dementia, an aging related neurological condition where the person's 'personhood' is lost along with his memory, devastating at the same time, lives of all those around him.
Ek Paus Haravlela
This film narrates the unfortunate pattern of parenting in modern India. This is an attempt to unfold the inner world of a kid (5 year old), who feels very lonely as his parents are busy in their respective careers.
This film is about a pre-teen boy who has to get his head shaved after his grandfather's death and the humiliation he has to face because of that. Intense anger leads him to take actions that eventually sadden him.
A widow with children and a bed-ridden father-in-law to look after, is going through a severe financial crunch and buys a grinding wheel on installment to support the family. But things go haywire…...
Longevity of life has certainly increased, but so has loneliness.This is a story of Arvind Sane, a retired IIT professor whose only daughter is married and staying in the US, battling loneliness and his search for meaning of life in these latter years of existence. He saves a small child from an accident, but denies the love offered by his parents.
Daar Koni Ughdat Nahi
This short film has a powerful theme - an innocent young man, who is exploited by his old flame. A very touching film.
Dhyaas (Longing) is about an orphaned pickpocket called Babu, who yearns for some human connection in a city filled with people. After Dada, his only friend shuns him away, Babu sets out on a journey to find himself a family.
15 Park Avenue
15 Park Avenue is an English language Indian film directed by Aparna Sen. The story revolves around Konkona Sen, who plays a young girl Mitali, fondly called Meethi, who suffers from schizophrenia, her older half sister Anjali, played by Shabana Azmi, and their mother, Mrs. Mathur, enacted by Waheeda Rehman.
Vertigo is a psychological thriller by Alfred Hitchcock and acclaimed to be his best, his favorite and one of the best films ever made. The film is complex and fairly convoluted, but based on the simple premise of acrophobia or fear of heights in a police detective who has witnessed a fellow officer fall to his death. He retires from police work as result, but is engaged as a private investigator to explore the strange behavior of the wife of his college acquaintance. Dizzyingly beautiful camera work, including the famous vertigo effect, snappy dialogue and a lovely musical score, make the film memorable.
The plot focuses on three women of different generations whose lives are interconnected by the novel Mrs. Dalloway byVirginia Woolf. Among them are Clarissa Vaughan, a New Yorker preparing an award party for her AIDS-stricken long-time friend and poet, Richard in 2001; Laura Brown, a pregnant 1950s California housewife with a young boy and an unhappy marriage; and Virginia Woolf herself in 1920s England, who is struggling with depression and mental illness whilst trying to write her novel.The entire story plays out in a single day in the life of each of these women, each remarkable in their own way. Some same gender relationships are hinted at, and the film resounds with some really moving one liners, like the one about staying alive only to please someone.
Through a glass Darkly
A young woman, Karin, has recently returned to the family island after spending some time in a mental hospital. On the island with her is her lonely brother and kind, but increasingly desperate husband. They are joined by Karin's father, who is a world-traveling author that is estranged to his children. The film depicts how Karin's grip on reality slowly slips away and how the bonds between the family members are changing in light of this fact.
Closing Film: Roj Nava Diwas
Documentary film on Muktangan de-addiction centre in Pune. The film, aptly titled, focuses on the motto of every person with addiction i.e."One day at a time". The film tells about the journey of Muktangan and showcases all the activities of the rehabilitation centre. The film is made by AVAHAN audio-visual unit of IPH, which is a sister concern of Muktangan. It was released to commemorate 25 years' work in the field of de-addiction.
Muktangan…… Age 24……Enters into a landmark year !
Sunday, 29th Aug, 2010 was very very special for me. Exactly 24 years back, at about
the same time anchoring a function to launch an organization called, ‘Muktangan De-
addiction Centre’…….. And there I was, 24 years later making my welcome speech to
the eagerly awaiting audience at Tilak Smarak Mandir, Pune.
The organization was entering its Silver Jubilee year. In front of me was my friend-
philosopher-guide, Baba (Dr. Anil Awachat), Mukta, my dear friend, Baba’s daughter
& leader of Muktangan today. There were my team members from Muktangan and a
packed audience of our recovered patients their families, well wishers & friends. I was
standing in one corner and in the other corner was my dear Mother-friend (Aai Maitreen
in Marathi) Dr. Sunanda Awachat. Twenty four years back she was with me on stage in
her physical self…… here she was in her ‘Portrait Frame’ but very much with me all but
Life sometimes is a part of strange but well meaning accidental incidents. Twenty five
years back, Baba-Sunanda and me embarked on this experiment……. Sunanda had
the courage, I carried hope and Baba provided his own intense, playful yet introspective
Evolution of premier treatment centre, today applauded as a centre of excellence,
a ISO certified organization, a place credited for evolving its unique treatment
program, a centre responsible for monitoring 80 other centers in Western India and
most importantly a place that has changed what life means for 14000 plus addicted
individuals & their keens……….. all this process was and is a intense emotional journey
for me…….. sometimes trying but genuinely fulfilling.
The journey of Muktangan is filmed for all of us by the energetic team of AVAHAN, our
media unit under the leadership of Sachin Gaokar. This is Sachin’s first independently
created and directed film…. And how forcefully yet delicately he has portrayed the spirit
of Muktangan on the celluloid. (Buy your copy at a special concessional rate of Rs. 100/
- from Book Counter). Brilliantly shot and edited this film has English subtitles. Aptly
titled ‘ROJ NAVA DIWAS’, this film was premiered on 29th August in the Anniversary
The audience clapped lustily marking the end of the screening and I invited on stage,
Baba, other dignitaries and our precious person of the day, Dr. Abhay Bang.
Abhay whom I call dada is most certainly more than a elder brother to me. He has seen
the process of Muktangan-building from close quarters. ‘Anil, Abhay and Anand’
therefore have been soul-mates for all these years and were sharing the stage together.
The occasion was release of Anil’s (Baba’s) book, MUKTANGANCHI GOSHTA. It’s a
unique creation by Baba and a must-read for all of us (again available from next week at
IPH book counter). In his unique style Baba literally weaves a web of words and shares
with us, the whole evolution of Muktangan. Baba was interviewed by his (and
Muktangan’s) close friends, Sunil Sukthankar and Sumitra Bhave (eminent filmmaker
duo). Baba’s interview was like recitation of a SUFI SAINT……… He was talking but his
thoughts had a strong lyrical, rhythm….. He was dwelling on the joy of giving,
unconditional acceptance and empathy. His philosophy of life shared and beautified by
Sunanda had actually come to real life in the form of Muktangan. I saw Baba, Sunanda’s
vision, and journey of Muktangan getting unified into one. Baba never is a slave of any
conventions and etiquettes. He has the creative courage to venture in any
communication format with gay abandon. His session is to be experienced to be
believed. Dr. Abhay also released special issue of Muktangan newsletter
‘Anand Yatri’ edited by senior editor & trustee of Muktangan Mr. Sada Dumbre.
If Baba was the emotive ethos of that morning then the cognitive crown was provided by
Abhay. We know him as a world famous medical researcher, social entrepreneur and
above all a deep thinker of humanity.
He started with giving accolades to Muktangan and its team and then converged on
how a culture of addictions is being deliberately spread by vested interests in power
politics. Abhay’s words were scathing and without any pretensions. He referred to
the new idea of making alcohol from food grain which will convert ‘Maharashtra’
to ‘Madyarashtra’. He talked about geography of the state now being designed as
wineland of Nasik, Molasissthan of South Maharashtra, Mosambi-Naringi Province of
Vidharbha etc. He then said that people becoming addict, and people who are taking
them to addiction are not the only ones to be blamed. All of us who are a part of this
newly growing consumeristic culture are demanding more & more of pleasure seeking
spree necessarily gives way to moral bankruptcy and dwarfism of values, he said.
Gandhiji had predicted this in his essay ‘Hind Swaraj’ (later published as a booklet)
way back in 1908. His statements were so harsh about future of the Western as well
as Eastern society that his well wishers advised him against publication. In his attack
on politicians he had termed the Parliament of Britain as ‘Prostitutes’. This was the
only word that he omitted in its edition of 1940 because it had hurt the sentiments of a
English woman-reader. However he asserted that his opinion remained the same.
While individual addictions required treatment the addicted civilization needs a ‘Value
Purge’ so the viruses of greed are tackled by the vaccine of self control (Saayam) and
I gave a summary of Abhay’s speech to the audience saying, he took us
from ‘Aatmaroop’ to ‘Vishvaroop’ in one sweep and also showed the lack of dichotomy
(Adwait) in it. I quoted Einstein & Martin Luther King (Jr.) about Gandhi’s relevance and
called Abhay’s speech as the ‘Frank words of a Thinker’ (Chintakache Khade bol) with
sincerity of a Saint. (Santachi Kalkal).
Abhay told the audience during his speech that as leprosy rehabilitation is synonymous
with Baba Amte’s work in Maharashtra, History will link ‘De-addiction Moment’ with
Muktangan and he bestowed on Anil and Sunanda and me a unique laurel of words
calling us ‘The TRIMURTI of Vysanmukti’.
Therefore, those three hours were no less in emotional intensity. I made my closing
comments saying that Baba’s interview will help readers to ‘Listen to’ the book
simultaneously as his voice was still resonating in our ears. And the film will help us
to take with us very goal-statement of Muktangan ‘one day at a time’…….. Roj Nava
SPANDAN- The newly born in IPH family
……… Again a series of positive co-incidences here………. A decade back I was called to address parents of a newly started school at Aurangabad. Mr. and Mrs. Kekre, a delightful couples were (and have been) Chief visionaries behind building a child-centric school aptly named as ‘Tender Care Home’ (TCH). Following my participation in their seminar, some of the teachers and parents started attending annual VEDH career conference at Thane. IPH team members started contributing to TCH activities. This culminated in organizing Aurangabad VEDH three years back.
As this association grew, IPH team became friendly with some of the parents like Atul-Deepa, Devidas-Jyoti and others. They mooted a publication through which a special Diwali issue was published for two years devoted to the cause of effective parenting. I participated in the venture as writer & adviser.
Atul and Deepa, the main architects, now wanted to enlarge the scope of activities and the group approached IPH with a proposal to start a regular tri monthly on parenting. IPH will be responsible for editorial content and Spandan communications will look after production and marketing. About a dozen members from IPH clinical team became active members of this group. Series of meetings were held. Sangeeta Rajpathak, our Maitra volunteer was given the charge as editor.
The first issue was planned. We all contributed and the Spandan communication team worked hard on layout and presentation. The result is a cute, healthy little baby called SPANDAN, weight 56 pages, complexion colorful and features, sharp and pleasing.
We all can become annual members of SPANDAN by paying Rs. 100/- to Meena (of elegance) or at the book counter. This ensures us delivery of four issues including 150 page strong Diwali issue.
The theme for Diwali is ‘Parents with a Difference’. There is a celebrity section on ‘My childhood’. We want contributions from children and youth in the form of experiences, poems, stories, essays, pictures. The theme is how children view their relationship with parents. Please encourage children you know age 5 to 25 years to contribute and hand it over to Meena or Sangeeta. If you have small experiential light hearted jokes and stories about parenting please send them over. Every year we will have to generate quality material to fill up, over three hundred printed pages.
Since the marketing and reaching out of SPANDAN has just been initiated, generation of inhouse material is important. Please go through the first issue to get some idea about the material that we want.
There is only one parallel in Marathi called ‘Palakniti’ which is a monthly magazine on parenting. Spandan is bilingual and proposes to be a magazine that parents and their children can ‘READ TOGETHER’.
So, cuddle this infant and contribute towards its development.
VEDH AURANGABAD 4TH EDITION ON 16th Jan 2011
VEDH:Fourth Edition at Aurangabad
(VEDH: Vocational Education,Direction and Harmony is a annual career conference organized by IPH for last 19 successive year in Thane. It is now organized in Aurangabad (4 years), Ahmednagar (5 years) and Nagpur (2 years). Dr.Anand Nadkarni has submitted this report after he designed and anchored latest VEDH at Aurangabad).
‘VEDH has finally arrived in Aurangabad’. This was a SMS sent by Mangesh (Dr.Mangesh Panat), pillar of the A’bad VEDH team. The date was Sunday, 16th Jan 2011. My journey to VEDH started on the previous day. I completed by outpatient’s work at 3.00 pm and headed straight for the airport. VEDH had a fascinating bunch of six faculty members. I had their Bio-datas & they had received the typed-out flow of the session with questions. For all these outstation VEDHs, how much I miss my co-anchors of Thane VEDH, (Deepika & Ravindra). From 8.30 am to 6.00p.m. I alone had to handle everything. But at A’bad the host organization TCH (Tender Care Home) school has a wonderful singing choir of ten students of tenth (this was their 4th year of VEDH) who render all VEDH songs in the most melodious manner. So, the singing part was very well taken care off. During this VEDH, for one song , their Dholaki drummer disappeared hence I had to fill up the gap by playing it….It was fun.
Let me tell you about the VEDH organizers a little. IPH and TCH school have an association of more than a decade. When Wing Commander Kenkare & Smt Kenkare Mam started the school with a ‘educational’ motive in their hearts, they started organizing innovative workshops for parents, teachers and students. IPH became a part of such initiatives. Kenkare Mam and her teachers started coming to Thane VEDH every year. By then, many enthusiastic parents had gathered around them. There were regular meetings, communications and the A’bad team participated at IPH in a two day workshop on “how to organize VEDH’. Thereafter started the journey of A’bad VEDH. It started in a modest auditorium and this year it was organized in a 1250 capacityAC auditorium where 1500 students and parents packed even the gangways and steps.
The A’bad team is versatile, committed and enthusiastic. Their arrangements are perfect. The parents group and staff of school, function as an integrated unit. The stage décor is designed by our own Sachin & team, so is arranged the filming of the programme. We had fantastic quality screens this year at A’bad and great camera work. Mr.Achyut Godbole, faculty of very first A’bad VEDH commented in jest “Anand, your volunteers are just amazing. The guy who opens the car-door for you is a surgeon and the guy driving you is an industrialist”. This just shows us that people with respectable vocations in the team do whatever work is allotted to them, exactly as it happens here in Thane VEDH.
The auditorium was packed and the stage had a delightful backdrop depicting the theme. ‘Yashachya Gavi Jata Jata’ (gearing up… on the road to success.)
First faculty of the day was IPS Officer Vishwas Nangre Patil. He comes from a village from Battees Shirale Taluka of Solapur district. He painted in his unique style a wordpicture of his struggle to become an IPS officer. The process of getting over his inferiority complex regarding English speaking was very interesting. He told the audience about different challenges he faced in his career including 26/11 when he was involved in an encounter with terrorists at TAJ Mumbai. This finale was so moving & inspiring that the whole auditorium rose to feet to give standing ovation to Mr.Vishwas.
The first session had taken the conference to a very high level. The next speaker was Dr.Kalpana Joshi, a Molecular Biologist and Research Scientist who heads the Pharma division at Piramal Research Centre in Mumbai. She too had to struggle a lot at every stage to get educated. She expounded on how a Molecule of a life saving drug passes through different stages of experiments before it reaches the consumer. This ‘Bench to Bedside’ journey was very interesting. She spoke about the process of how she could file more than 16 patents for original research in her field.
Mr.Kiran Purandare, an environmentalist and researcher on Birds was the third guest. He coupled his narrative with wonderful photographs & added excitement by rendering exact demonstration of how birds communicate. He has mastered the communication style of more than 60 birds and 20 mammals. His narration focused on how being close to nature teaches you so many things regarding yourself & your planet.
In the post lunch session, a noted nature-photographer from A’bad, Mr.Baiju Patil was felicitated as he had won the prestigious Sanctuary Award as Best Wild Life photographer of Asia out of 16000 entries. He demonstrated his work with wonderful transperencies. A passionate & self made photographer Baiju had to face many odds on his way before international recognition came his way. His complete catalogue ‘Wild scape’ full of exciting photographs was recently published & the edition got sold out.
Then was the turn of Mukta Puntambekar, a clinical psychologist and Deputy Director of Muktangan deaddiction centre at Pune. Mukta, daughter of celebrated author Anil Awachat & his psychiatrist wife Dr.Anita alias Sunanda, was a picture of poise & confidence. She shared with the audience her journey from school kid going to Municipal school (deliberately put by her parents) to a professional under whose leadership Muktangan was declared a centre of excellence by the Union government and also became an ISO recognized institution.
Final session of the day was rendered by versatile actor Atul Kulkarni. He converted the interview in a kind of a performance using the entire stage to move on… It became as if a drama performance between him & myself. The audience was thrilled. From an average student who did not show promise in any field, how he has become a successful actor with social commitment… the story is intriguing and has a lot of learning.
You will soon get all these sessions in a two DVD set produced by our own Avahan, media unit. The sessions were followed by a Q.A. session between me & audience. From 8.30 am to 6.00 p.m was a long time to sit. But students did that. Many teachers and students had come from 20-30km radius, from different villages. The teachers shared how they use VEDH DVD’s . one session every week with their students for discussion…. That was most satisfying.
The VEDH team is now planning to hold fifth VEDH in a still bigger way probably at a outdoor venue. The essay competition got over 200 entries and every one got “Hastaacha Paus" at the end. Everybody was tired but excited. An edutainment event had arrived at Aurangabad….. And all concerned felt deeply satisfied about it.
New Additions and reviews of some the books at our library
The interesting New Additions in IPH Library
·YogaThe Science of the Soulby Osho, In Yoga Osho explains the meaning of some of the most important Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.
·Hidden Misteries by Osho, The real significance of temples, holy places and statues and the original purpose of mantras, astrology and incense has all been lost over the years.
·The Mind of the Soul (Responsible Choice) by Gary Zukav and Linda Francis.The Mind of the Soul describes with easy-to-read text and practical exercises how each moment in life presents a choice.
·Tomorrow's God (Our Greatest Spiritual Challenge) By Neale Donald Walsch.The author of the conversations with god series writes another "dialogue" between two voices on the subject of who God is and how the human understanding of god makes a difference in choices and behaviour.
·The Scientific Indian (A Twenty-First Century Guide to the World Around Us) By A.P.J. Abdul Kalam & Y.S. Rajan.
·Gandhi's Outstanding Leadership By Pascal Alan Nazareth. Innumerable books have been written about Gandhi's "Satyagraha" and Sarvodaya Strategies, his "experiments", fads and foibles but hardly any on his Leadership, its quality, stature and lots more.
·Quick Meeting Openers for Busy Managers. (More than 560 Icerbreakers, Energizers, and other Creative Activities that get results By Brian Cole Miller.
·Easier Than You Think…. (Because life doesn't have to be so hard the small changes that add up to a world of difference) By Richard Carlson.
·Seven Steps to Stop a Heart Attack By Dr. Bob Arnot.When Dr. Bob Arnot's father – himself a distinguished doctor – died of a massive heart attack, it came as a horrible shock.A heart attack can happen to anyone, but upon further investigation, Dr. Arnot came to believe that his father's death could have been prevented. The tragedy inspired Dr. Arnot to write this book.
·Ten Minute Activities. (Grades 1-3) Ten-Minute Activities, Grades 1-3 is full quick learning activities that span the curriculum.
·BATTLE A visual Journey Through 5,000 Years of Combat By R.G. Grant.
·Sixty Seconds byPhil Bolsta.Spiritual awakenings, whether quiet and subtle or dramatic and breathtaking, are deeply personal events.
·Chicken Soup for the Indian Romantic Soul.101 Stories about Love and Romance by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen & Raksha Bharadia.
·The Maruti Story By Bhargava with Seetha (How a Public Sector Company Put India on Wheels)
·Why We Hurt By Dr. Greg Fors. (Your total self-care guide for Backaches, Headaches, Shoulder Pain, Arthritis and Fibromyalgia).
·The Healthy Back Deck By Olivia H. Miller with Beverly, Biondi, Licensed Physical Therapist. (50 simple techniques for a pain-free back)
·A Really Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson. In this exciting new edition of his worldwide bestseller, and has been specially abridged and adapted for younger readers.
Here is a breezy informal review of some of the new books in our library.Hope it interests you enough to read them.
The interesting New Additions are as follows.
·A Cup of Tea By Osho This is a collection of 365 letters written by Osho toseekers and friends. These letters have a rare and beautiful quality.
·Books I have Loved By OshoAn extraordinary book: Osho, the enlightened mystic who has over six hundred and sixty-eight most loved books – and why he loves them.
·Intutive WellnessUsing your body's inner wisdom to heal By Laura Alden Kamm, Founder, center for applied energy medicine.
·Mother Teresa come be my light, the private writings of the "Saint of Calcutta" edited and with commentary by Brian Kolodiejchuk,M.C.
·Finding the purpose in life, 26 people who inspired the world By R.M. Lala.
·The 5 essential people skills, how to assert yourself, listen to others, and resolve conflicts By Dale Carnegie Training.
·The Starbucks Experience, 5 principles for turning ordinary into extraordinary By Joseph A. Michelli.
·Genome, The autobiography of a species in 23 chapters By Matt Ridley.
·The Casebook of Forensic Detection, How science solved 100 of the world's most baffling crimes By Colin Evans.
·Lonely Planet India (13th edition) Lonely planes is the expert on India.This 13th edition eases you through the spicy diversity of India – from the thrilling bustle of Delhi's bazaars, to the laid-back beaches of Goa, the serene beauty of Himalayan Sikkin, and the majesty of Jaisalmer's ancient fort.
·The Story of Philosophy By Will Durant,The classic account of the lives and opinions of the great philosophers of the Western world – from Plato to Santayana – by one of the greatest thinkers and writers of our time.
SEARCHING MENTAL HEALTH IN GADCHIROLI
Searching Mental Health in Gadchiroli
(SEARCH is a pioneering research and service organization in the field of public health situated in Gadchiroli District of Maharashtra state founded by the Doctor-Duo, Dr.Abhay and Dr.Rani Bang. This organization has contributed to world research in core issues of Infant and Women health care. SEARCH offers basic medical services to people in tribal area over last two decades. It also organizes special camps to treat specific medical and surgical issues.)
It was in February 2010, when I had gone to the campus of SEARCH, the idea of a Mental Health initiative germinated. I am a regular visitor of this campus situated at around 16KM from Gadchiroli town since 1994. I contribute a little wherever and whenever called for. In this particular visit however I had no particular agenda. The house of Bangs, also happens to be a ‘home’ for me and my family. So, this time around I had chosen relaxation over work….. But Vahini (Bhabhi-Dr.Rani Bang) had other plans. She has a busy outpatients service through-out the day. When she dropped in for lunch she requested me whether I could examine a couple of her patients psychiatrically. As an elder in all respects, should could have ordered me, but put a request. Trying to match her enthusiasm to see patients, I went to the OPD premises and examined patients. I saw un-diagnosed depressions, somatization (physical complaints of psychiatric diseases), chronic Anxiety Disorders. I tried to treat these patients by giving available psycho-tropic medication. I also examined a case of depression admitted as a inpatient in the ward. Vahini is a astute clinician and extremely alert of the psychiatric morbidity. With her extraordinary communication skills, the psychosocial data flows to her via the tribal women.
In the evening while chatting over a cup of tea, idea of organizing regular mental health activities at SEARCH was discussed by Vahini with me as well as Dr.Abhay and their elder son Dr.Anand. (Fresh postgraduate in Public Health from John Hopkins, USA). Dr.Anand Bang (hereafter referred as AB) enthusiastically took the responsibility of shaping the initiative. Dr.Abhay (Abhaydada as I call him) lent his support and his wisdom ofcourse.
And so we discussed in a excited manner How to detect psychiatric patients at village level?...SEARCH has a wonderful network of ‘Aarogyadoots’(health workers) at local village level. We decided to focus on Psychosis, Depression, Anxiety, Alcoholism and Epilepsy as common neuro-psychiatric disorders. After coming back to Thane, IPH team sent screening questionnaires to SEARCH. Dr.Thatte and Kuldeep (both clinical psychologists in IPH team) filmed the screening interview on a DVD and sent it to SEARCH. Dr.AB and his team sensitized the health workers. They used print media and local newspapers to spread awareness. Last week of December 2010 was planned for a camp.
Meanwhile I started organizing help from my fellow psychiatrist friends in that region. Dr.Ratnakar from Bhandara, Dr.Ravi from Amravati and Dr.Sagar from Nagpur joined in to form the psychiatrist team. Dr.Sudhir Bhave, senior psychiatrist from Nagpur rendered his services for the second day of the camp…Yes, we planned two days, 10 am to 4p.m. as camp duration at SEARCH campus. Young psychologists who were at campus doing research on mental retardation and medical officers of SEARCH joined to pen down histories. We made a list of basic psychotropic medicines to be dispensed in the camp and thereafter. The SEARCH team meticulously arranged four ‘ examination huts’ with special enclosures to collect history.
All this was done…We did not know how many patients will come. But by 9.30 am itself, on the first day, there was a queue at the registration counter. Near the main gate of SEARCH there is a temple of ‘Maa Danteshwari’ of the tribals. We performed pooja and everybody got the sweet Prasad. The camp started with a bang. 125 patients came on the first day and around 50 on the second day. There was a diagnostic variety and even fresh untreated cases of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder were detected. Many patients of schizophrenia, epilepsy and Mood Disorders had at times sought help from city professions from Chandrapur, Nagpur but had never kept regular follow up because of problems with distance, finances or both. All of us doctors wrote detailed case histories so that follow up can be managed. Considering the response, Dr.AB and SEARCH team (which includes ex IPHite Venky Iyer, psychologist) planned a monthly outpatients OPD on last Thursday of every month. Dr.Ravi, Dr.Ratnakar and Dr.Sagar volunteered to come each month, turn by turn.
January 27, 2011 was the first follow up OPD and Dr.Ravi examined 68 patients with 28 new cases. Dr.AB and Dr.Ravi smsed in the evening with enthusiasm. In addition to the monthly follow up , we now plan to have a six monthly bigger camp along with mental health awareness programmes, speeches and audiovisuals. The social fabric at Gadchiroli is getting churned with unprecedented forces. The core issues of development are yet to be answered in a planned & systematic way. But with television, the consumeristic lure of urban lifestyle has already set in. Continuous presence of naxalite influence and omnipresence of security forces adds a glaringly dark shade to the landscape and mindscapes… It is a turbulent time for a society that was only touched by ‘our’ civilization as a means of Macro and Micro exploitation. The morbidity in terms of what we are seeing at first glance is in form of defined psychiatric syndromes. But beneath this layer of the obvious may lie stratas of distress, agony & suppression…. A mine of research material to study biological and psychosocial causation & psychological illhealth.
IPH alongside the missionary zeal of SEARCH has pledged to render services as well as to study the dynamics of mental health. Sustaining this effort will require a lot of help in terms of medicines, manpower and creative ideas….Well begun is half done… The other half could be harder, more challenging and therefore more interesting.
– Dr.Anand Nadkarni
On Sunday 9th January, noted Industrialist, Chairman & MD of INDOCO Remedies, Mr.Suresh Kare celebrated his 72nd birthday by publishing his memoirs depicting his journey towards establishing a successful corporate venture. Aptly titled KARENAMA, the Marathi version is written by Nandini Aatmasiddha & the English version translated by Aditi Panandikar.
In the packed to capacity Nehru Centre Auditorium, eminent personalities, from many fields had gathered to witness the occasion. Noted Scientist Dr.Anil Kakodkar was the Chief Guest.
Mr.Suresh Kare has a long standing releationship with IPH. He has been one of our major patrongs, supporting our cause. He along with his wife Aruna regularly grace major IPH functions. Additionally INDOCO has been our corporate client for close to a decade now. Dr.Anand Nadkarni was given the role to compere the evening including conducting a talk show with a celebrity panel.
The panel included eminent people who know Mr.Kare in different capacities and angles. Mr.Subhash Dandekar (Chairman Emeritus, Camlin Ltd), Mr.Sharad Upasani (IAS, Ex Chief Sec.Maharashtra State), Dr.Nandoo Laad (Sr.Orthopaedic surgeon), Smt Snehalata Deshmukh (Ex VC, Univ.of Mumbai) and Mr.Sandeep Bambulkar (Director, Indoco) shared their anecdotes about the persona of Mr.Kare. Mr.Julio Reberio and Ramkrishna Nayak gave their blessings to Mr.Kare as elders. As Aditi Panandikar (Director INDOCO) and her entire team had organized the event with impeccable details and accuracy.
MANAS wishes Mr.Kare & INDOCO many years of health & prosperity.
'PSYCHIATRIST OF THE SANE' GOES INTO THIRD REPRINT IN SIX MONTHS
‘Shahanyancha Psychiatrist’ the Marathi Book written by Dr.Anand Nadkarni depicting the journey of IPH over the two decades & before, was released in March 2010 to mark 20 years of IPH functioning. This book has received rave reviews from critics and extremely warm response by readers. The author’s desk has regular flow of letters, e-mails and donatins for IPH since the book was published. Within six months the book has run into its third reprint.
Dr.Mahesh Kulkarni, a practicing psychiatrist from Newton (UK) read the book and got impressed with the concept of execution of DWIJ Puraskar. He contacted Dr.Nadkarni and saught his help to organize the UK-European Union counterpart of DWIJ Puraskar since there is no such project in the whole continent of Europe. IPH has sent all the audio-visual material to him produced by our AV Unit AVAHAN. Let us see, how and when this idea germinates in the European soil.
TRAINING PROGRAMMES WITH A DIFFERENCE
Training Programmes with a Difference
Mumbai University under a UGC sponsorship conducts regular refresher courses for its teachers. I was invited to contribute to one such course in the University campus. The topic was “Multidisciplinary Approach in teaching and learning.” Dr.Anuradha Sovani, Reader in Dept.of Psychology ( and trustee IPH) had co-ordinated this course. Professors of as diverse subjects as History, Psychology, Economy, Political Sciences, Literature were participating in this course.
I presented some of the topics that I have tried to study from a multidisciplinary angle. My topics ranged from historical events to personality studies of distinguished people. I tried to tell the audience that they can come together, put in their perspectives and make teaching and learning more interesting as well as work on its depth. Almost 3-1/2 to 4 hours were spent in stimulating discussion. How far this motivation gets sustained…..well the jury is still out on it.
In the very first week of new year I had another interesting training assignment. Following the terrorist attach of 26/11 on Mumbai, the Maharashtra Police is in the process of developing a rapid action team titled ‘Force One’. I conducted a four hour workshop on them on the topic of “Escape from Agra: Lessons in Crisis Management.” Many officers were good readers of history and it turned out to be an interesting and inspiring interaction. Dr.Sadanand Date, IPS who leads this force has put into action many creative ideas and management themes to develop this protective force. I have planned further sessions on Emotional Management with them in near future.
The month of January also saw me participate in a musical edutainment programme on Mental health. Sponsored by the newspaper Navshakti and held in Central Dadar, this show titled ‘Maziya Mana’ drew huge audience of over 1800 people. Uttare Mone, well known Media anchor had designed this event under the banner of Miti Creations. The programme consisted with her dialogue with me on different aspects of Mental health, interspersed with Marathi, Hindi songs on the theme of mind rendered by upcoming and popular singers. There were also celebrity spot interviews in between. The show went on for almost three hours and people were generous in their concentration & response.
January had still not ended when I embarked on my journey to Doha, capital of Qatar to conduct a training programme for employees of Siemens Limited. Siemens has a good presence in Qatar and has over two hundred Indian employes stationed there. Some are staying with families & some as bachelors.
Qatar is a oilrich kingdom state in the middleeast that has won the bid to hold 2022 FIFA Football World Cup. It organized Asian games in 2006 and I was there to witness the frenzy of Asia Cup final in Doha stadium. On that evening there were bigscreens erected in neighbourhoods and we saw from a distance the fireworks after the final. So this country is busy getting ready for the World Cup. Already, there is construction work everywhere. Huge skyscrapers are coming up. The ‘West Bay’ business district skyline can beat any American City. The roads are wide, traffic is fast and disciplined. The cameras tract drivers and there is heavy penalty if you break signals.
People from other countries vastly outnumber natives. It is a Islamic state where citizens get free power, health & education. Even citizens of other countries get very good medical care. The sprawling hospital campus is equipped with air-ambulances as well. Huge white palace, imposing structures of museums and government organizations are surrounded by well placed dates trees and excellent lawns & flower beds. The temperatures are extreme. It was winter in Jan and temperature was just like Delhi but in July-Aug it touches 50 degrees celcius.
The Siemens team stays in a area near to their office. The company has rented some apartment complexes. There is a common mess for bachelors. The office is situated near the City centre but most engineers sweat it out at many sites across the country sometimes travelling over 350 kms in a day.
Mr.Lenny & Mr.Bernard with the rest of their team were extremely efficient in managing even small details of the tour. Dr.G.K.Kulkarni, in charge of Medical Affairs for SEA-Siemens was there alongwith me. This training module is originally his idea titled ‘FIT 4 ALL’ and addresses 4 health concerns of employees namely, Hypertension, Diabetes, Obesity and Stress Management. Dr.Kulkarni covered the physical health aspects and I addressed the mental health issues. First batch consisted of ‘Bachelor’ executives and second batch attended with their spouses.
I visited the apartment complex where they all stay. The team occupies over one hundred flats together. Children go to local schools. The spouses from every part of India try to socialize in their own way. The people were very warm and eager to learn. Along with the course material they received a copy of book ‘Nature and Signature’ as well as an audio CD of relaxation procedure.
The schedule left me some time to take city tour and visit Islamic Art Museum. Very elegantly structured on the seafront this museum houses many pieces of art and crafts. The entry was free and a with a multimedia guide around the neck the tour was indeed very educative with audio-visual inputs from the small machine. We visited a Arabic Restaurant to enjoy local fish delicacies and local breads and salads. Visit to a supermarket called LULU was of no great excitement. It was huge but now we see such kinds in India as well. The hotel where me and Dr.Kulkarni stayed was right in the city centre and although modeled on old Delhi guesthouses in terms of carved wooden furniture had every modern amenity. The time difference between Doha & Mumbai is of two and half hours. While reaching the flight was late by an hour but still we reached before midnight, local time.
So, from Jungles of Gadchiroli to the desert of Doha…. Was my journey in the first month of January 2011. I treated tribals, interacted with lecturers, took training for commandos, staged a public show, addressed overseas executives…..Add to this Aurangabad, VEDH… The career conference (detailed report elsewhere in the issue)…Add to this a stress management programme at Nagothane for RIL (Reliance). I experienced so many dimensions of mental health…. The month made me a lot richer.
-DR. ANAND NADKARNI
ON TOUR......KARAD TO KOLHAPUR & BACK
On Tour…..Karhad to Kolhapur and Back
“How do you tackle monotony in your profession as a psychiatrist?...” someone asked me recently. “Luckily I don’t have to. After 25 years of practice, I experience every day as if new”. I said there are so many colour of mental health that I can draw, there is no monotony and therefore no boredom.
Me and my IPH colleague Sunil started early morning on 17th Feb 2011 from Thane to reach Karad, a city in south Maharashtra by afternoon. This was the beginning of my five day lecture tour. IPH had organized a Palakshala in Karad 7 years back. A group of ladies that came together at that time, is functioning today organizing many cultural and educational activities. Dr.Sharavi Belapure, a senior Medical practioner did Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT) course at IPH and then finished her PG in psychology. She and her family were a driving force in organizing my public lecture at Karad. After initial hiccoughs with the projection system and sound system, my lecture on Emotions went on without disturbance. Over 300 people attended. After the function, we had a small meeting of our recovered patients from Muktangan deaddiction centre, residing in Karad. Senior Counsellor from Muktangan, Mr.Prasad …….was also present.
After enjoying the caring hospitality of Belapure family, I set out for Ichalkaranji the next day. My first lecture there was at 11.00 am. It was for teenager students on “Changing Times, Changing Careers”. Over 1200 students packed the auditorium. The audio-visual support was excellent here with a AC auditorium facility. After the lecture many interested students came up the stage and asked very interesting and relevant question.
At 6.00p.m. on the same day to listen to my presentatation on effective parenting over 900 citizens packed the auditorium. With the help of power point presentation I spoke for approximately 90 minutes and then there was a QA session. Since this was a drama auditorium, the light arrangement and sound quality were excellent.
Next morning, all our Muktangan’graduates’ from the region (Recovered addiction patients) gathered in a hall for a two hour interactive session. Over hundred patients and their family members were present. The QA extended from clinical issues of withdrawal to psychological issues of anger management.
My afternoon presentation in the Auditorium at 4.00p.m. was ‘Rang Bhawananche’. It was a holiday of Shivjayanti and a little odd time. But by 4.30p.m. the auditorium was full. After my 30 minute presentation, pertinent questions were asked. People were taking notes while listening.
Next day early morning we left for IMA Hall, Miraj. The distance is around 25 km. Indian Medical Association, Miraj had organized a day-long Palakshala for which after 350 registrations the counter had to be closed. I conducted first two lectures from 10.30 am to 1.30 p.m. The response was heartwarming. Mrs.Rajani Karandikar, Mrs.Shama Palkar, Mrs.Surabhi Naik, colleagues from IPH who had come to Miraj conducted the later half of this Palakshala in three ‘class rooms’.
Meanwhile I left for Kurundwad a small town twenty five km from Sangli. My interview on REBT titled ‘Aaplya Trasache Karan Kon?’ was conducted by local psychiatrist Dr.Charudatt Kulkarni. Over three hundred people attended this function at 4.p.m.
I cam back to Sangli for ‘Rang Bhawananche’ at 7.00 p.m. to find the auditorium full and people waiting outside to listen to the talk from there. Again the QA session was a delight. Over six hundred people waited and participated till 9p.m.
The next day at Kolhapur was going to be busier. My workshop on parenting (11.am to 2.pm) and Anger Management (4p.m. to 7p.m.) were organized by Samvedana Palak Manch. It was a working day , and timing were odd. Board exams were near. But 750 people had registered for each workshop and many others were waiting outside the auditorium.
At all the places IPH books and CDs were displayed for sale. Over Rs.55000/- worth material was sold. Additionally Samkaleen Publication was also having a counter at all venues. More than 120 copies of my book ‘Shahanyancha Psychiatrist’ were sold from that counter in addition to ‘Muktanganachi Goshta’ (by Anil Awachat). In the form of workshop charges & donation Rs.93000/- were raised for IPH. It was worth noting that our REBT students now spread across the state were active organizers of the tour. Dr.Belapure (Karad), Dr.Manjushree Kulkarni (Miraj), Dr.Sachin Ketkar (Ichalkaranji), Dr.Charudatta Kulkarni (Sangli) and Dr.Dileep Shinde (Sangli) were prominent amongst them. All the local organizers were extremely effective and deligent. I was flooded with gifts and good food everywhere I went. Ms.Deepa from IPH admin had painstakingly designed my minute to minute programme with excel sheets mailed in advance to all local people. Bharat, Roopali, Rajan had all chipped in to help. As a result of this there was not a single hitch in logistics in these 5 days, and over 1200km covered with 6 destinations. Prasad Dhawale, Senior Counsellor from Muktangan had organized the patient follow –ups.
At 7.30 p.m. on the same evening I addressed group of recovered patients of addiction and their families at Kolhapur. Over 120 people attended. We had a 90 minute interactive session where many questions were asked on the Alchoholic Anonymous programme of recovery. The concept of ‘GOD’ was discussed since it is a part of the AA programme.
At 9.30p.m. psychiatrist from Kolhapur had gathered together to listen to my presentation titled, ‘Psychiatrist in a role of Mental Health Manager.’ There was a lively discussion on the expansion of role of a psychiatrist. This was followed by dinner. A young psychiatrist approached me and said. ‘ All newly practicing psychiatrist in Maharashtra are thankful to you. Your books help us to interact with patients and your work of twenty five years has given new found respect to our profession.” He bowed down and touched my feet with those emotions. I too was moved. The pilgrimage for Destigmatization is drawing strength, I told myself…. 5 days, 6 cities. 13 programmes and interacting with over 6000 people….. Mental Health for ALL!
On the first Day of March 2011, Mahatma Gandhi Mission, Aurangabad, a premier educational trust organized a workshop by Dr. Anand Nadkarni for its teachers. Around 500 teachers from 11 educational institutes attended this program on ‘Understanding Emotions’.
A group of readers from Makarand Sahaniwas Mumbai had organized a dialogue with Dr. Nadkarni on his book ‘Swabhav-Vibhav’ on the evening of March 3rd 2011. These readers made their self made presentations on the book & asked questions. The session ended with Dr. Nadkarni singing evening prayers from the book.
On 6th March 2011, Dr. Nadkarni was in the city of Ratnagiri. To make the Anniversary of SANTULAN, a Mental Health care centre of Dr. Shashvat Shere, a public lecture was organized on ‘Rang Bhavananche’. In spite of the India-Ireland world cup cricket match the auditorium was full at 5.00 p.m. Thoughtful questions were asked by the audience at the end of the presentation.
SILVER MEDAL FOR MITALI MOKASHI.
Ms.Mitali Mokashi , who was given counselling by our Dr.Shubhangi Datar , has won a Silver Medal at National Rhythmic Gymnastics. Further she has also got selected for Asian Junior Championship.
Launch of Manovikas DVD
Manovikas project was launched in1998. This is an Mental health awareness project. The main objective is to bring in awareness about mental health and also to reduce the stigma related to mental disorder and its treatment. Our team of volunteers talk about functions of mind, positive and negative effects of thought on the mind, myths and misconceptions about mental disorders and its treatment and how to keep the mind healthy.Till date more than 800 programs have been conducted.
In 2011 the project has launched a DVD in Hindi with English subtitles. This will help IPH to reach out to a larger section of society to spread its motto of Mental Health for all.
"Help is just a call away in times of emotional distress" - that is Maitra Helpline for you. Tele counseling or rather, an "Emotional First aide" helpline. Whatever your age, gender or problem/distress call 022 -25385447. This helpline is active between 9 AM & 9 PM working days. Sundays between 9 AM - 2PM