Indore: Breaking the taboo: Victims need love and support, not rejection and fear

Indore: Breaking myths and sharing causes of AIDS to commemorate World Aids Day, students of Paul Institute of Professional Studies staged a nukkad natak (street play) ‘My Health My Right’ at Musakhedi Square and Barah Pathar Square on Friday. Presenting accurate details about HIV/AIDS, students aptly narrated scenes to bring change in mindset of people.

The play was written and directed with detailed information about causes of AIDS, diagnosis and treatment collected through effectively discussion with the health institutes and social institutes involved in this field. The script revolved around two main characters– Pinky and Rajababu. To portray the first series of incidents at Pinky’s home, team of students formed a circle and called audience to witness a normal household scene, where Pinky tried to discuss AIDS and its causes while chatting with her parents. However, before she could even start, her mother asked her to bite her tongue.

Hesitant to have open discussion about a disease that spreads through sexual intercourse, mother controls Pinky. However, father was though comfortable, could not support her openly.

The story then moved on to find Rajababu being chosen as groom for Pinky through an arranged meeting. Pinky’s father requested the would be husband for an EIA test. Again, holding back on her husband’s request, Pinky’s mother finalised the  marriage without the test. Living their golden period, both of them were happy and at gay until one day Rajababu’s friend came singing a song expressing joy of sexual pleasure in life. The artistic skills of students here fetched a round of applause from audience, as they turned around to form a circle and brilliantly depicted the scene where Rajababu ended up having unprotected sex with a prostitute after being tempted by his friend.

Living married life after slipping through bachelorhood, Pinky and Rajababu gradually fell sick and later, found to be infected by HIV.
Highlighting the need for precautions, team of students sang sarcastic jingles. The catchiest lines from the songs that became an instant hit was ‘mard ko dard nahi hota…par AIDS ho sakta hai’. Thus, the play concluded with educating masses the safety and preventive measures helpful in combating the spread of the disease and ultimately, eradicating it.

NSS coordinator of DAVV, D Prakash Gadwal praised and motivated the students to stage many such plays for social changes. College director Fr Simon Raj and principal Dr Sr Alice Thomas also lauded the students for their efforts in portraying such a complex subject so brilliantly.

Them apart, a good number of onlookers at both the locations too thanked the students for enlightening them on the hitherto unknown aspects of the taboo disease and extended support to the effort wholeheartedly.

– Play artistes: Jamila batterywala, Khadija Jawadwala, Sakina Zenith, Muskan Baghzai, Rahul Mansukhani, Prasham Kasliwal, Gaurav Pal, Nayan Khatke, Sanskar Jain, Shreesha Joshi, Nayan Tressa, Mitul Padiyar, Disha Rathor, Shivani Yadav, Amandeep Singh, Tarun, Amrita Dodeja.

– Directors: Stafard Anthony and Dr Ravi Vyas.

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