Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Doha Bound: I have got mixed feelings!

Its Tuesday night and I can't wait for next twenty four hours to pass by. The reason is, on Thursday  early morning, I will take a flight to Doha, Qatar. That's the city where this year's UN Climate change summit or COP18 as its called, is happening.

At COP17, I had met these small and marginal farmers' group from Bolivia. My eyes will again be looking for such groups and the developments to help farmers affected by climate change

Jonathan Pershing - negotiator from the US, playing his role of a climate denier to the perfection at COP17 in Durban at 2011. Wonder if he has mellowed down a bit since then!
It will be my second straight year at a COP. It, however, almost didn't happen. Because, the Climate Change Media Partnership fellowship, offered jointly by Internews, IIED and Panos London - which had sent me to Durban last year, was cancelled this year for lack of fund. I had applied again and was also short listed. So, when the fellowship was cancelled, my hopes were dashed.

But then, like a miracle, I got a sponsorship, from United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification(UNCCD).

Friday, November 16, 2012

Maternal mortality: save some outrage for other Savitas

Most of the Indian media houses that are now making an uproar over the death of Savita Halappanavar, have actually maintained a stoic silence over maternal mortality and unsafe abortion in India all through the year.

For past 2 days, one of the lead news headlines in Indian media has been the death of Savita Halappanavar - a 31-yearold pregnant Indian woman. Savita died in a hospital in Ireland of septicaemia after the doctors refused her abortion, despite having several days’ of severe pain and bleeding. The doctors had their own reason to do that: abortion in the Catholic country is strictly banned.

Now, our media is discussing this a lot; highlighting the rigidity of the Irish law, the religion and the culture and also questioning the actions of the doctors etc etc. Very praiseworthy!

 However, one question that keeps returning to my mind is this: Savita died more than 2 weeks ago, on 28th of October. Why did it take so long for the news to come out?

The answer, according to me, lies in the fact that news of medical malpractice doesn't usually come out on its own, unless we make an active effort to bring it out.