Sunday, 10 February 2013


Adolescence - it can be a turbulent time. Teenagers deal with a vast array of new emotions during this transitional period, one of them being the urge to commit suicide. Sruthi Meenakshi.R writes on why teenagers choose this extreme step rather than sorting things out.

“Most youngsters who attempt suicide do not really want to die” says Psychologist Ms. Anita Fernando, who is a volunteer at Sneha foundation. It is a known fact that teenagers are at high risk of suicide. The reasons might be varied like academic disappointments, relationship failures or psychological imbalance, but one fact is that they are actually crying out for help.

Contrary to the popular belief that the suicidal person wants to die and feels there is no turning back, Ms. Anita says, “Suicidal people are usually ambivalent, wavering until the last moment between wanting to live and wanting to die. Most suicidal people do not want die”. Life seems to be nothing more than a hellish nightmare to the disappointed youth of modern emotional world. They do not wait to analyze things and they jump to the conclusion that their problems are insoluble. Mrs. Charumathi, mother of two teens feels that parents should have an open communication with their children, especially if they look depressed. “Parents should give freedom, respect their teen’s feelings and bring out their individuality”, she says.

A recent study stated that the highest suicide rate in the world is among girls in South India. “Indian society is still predominantly traditional and conservative, and dating and courtship among teenagers is frowned upon and discouraged. Stress factors such as family conflicts, domestic violence, academic failures, unfulfilled romantic ideals and mental illness all contribute to the high levels of teen suicide among girls, especially in India”, says Mrs. Anita. It is also found that most of them either suicide by hanging or self-immolation.

Sexual orientation with its accompanying pressures and stigmas are major deciding factors for teen suicides. Gay teens or those unsure of their sexual identity are more likely to commit suicide, particularly if they have suffered bullying or harassment. One of the major problems is getting psychiatric counselling when it's needed. Parents contribute a lot to their teen’s suicidal thoughts. There is the possibility of domestic violence in the home, physical or other forms of abuse, or parental indifference. Sometimes the parents are very indifferent and remain unconnected with their children. Ms. Anita says, “Many kids feel they just can't measure up to parental or teacher expectations. Parents sometimes tend to live their incomplete dreams through their children, so irrespective of their child's likes or dislikes or abilities they tend to pressure them to achieve and criticize them for their failures. And importantly, most of the teens do not open up to their parents due to the age gap”. However Vaishnavi, a teenager, says “I feel very comfortable to speak out to my parents especially when I am troubled or depressed. They do have high expectations from me but they make sure that they do not pressurize me”. Parents who’ve lost a child to suicide undergo a period of folie. Ms. Anita feels that the knowledge that their love was not enough to save their child and the fear that others will judge them to be an unfit parent might raise powerful feelings of failure. It isn’t uncommon for newly bereaved parents to express thoughts of suicide, regardless of how their child has died.

It is a myth that teens who talk about suicide rarely commit suicide. Most of the teens who attempt or commit suicide give clues or warnings of their intentions. Do not ignore statements like, "You'll be sorry when I'm dead," or "I can't see my way out." Ms. Anita says, “This is a time when receiving attention is exactly what’s needed as the teen is trying to express how much pain they are in. No matter how casually or jokingly said, these may really indicate suicidal feelings”. The mental condition of our younger generation is in constant turmoil. The emotions of today’s youngsters are different from that of olden days which the parents and elders do not recognize and is in relation to their peers, social status, environments etc. Societies have become much more open than before, which has positive and negative consequences. TV and other media have become more important and have a strong impact in the young minds. Too much of addiction to Internet and this self-centered approach often aggravates their isolated life. Mrs. Charumathi feels that the media impact is more negative. “It feed new ideas to the children and aggravates even the slightest thought of suicide”, she exclaims.

She feels that often the teenagers do not have the ability to think about life and life events in terms of the broader perspective .They tend to believe that all of the unhappiness they are feeling and experiencing will go on forever. “Everything that is happening to them is in the ‘here and now’. They should have the capacity to think that there might be a brighter future just around the corner”, she says.


Monday, 17 December 2012

Neethane En Ponvasantham movie review

Neethane En Ponvasantham , directed by Gautham Vasudev Menon is a story of Varun and Nithya, two childhood sweethearts and their journey of life together. As the director claims, it is a musical journey, and Ilayaraja's breezy songs keep reaching the shore within short intervals. The movie starts with Varun Krishnan( Jiiva) and Nithya Vasudevan ( Samantha) meeting each other at inter college culturals. The director takes us to the past , back in school when the couple Varun and Nithya broken up for some reason. The story then comes to the present and forays into the future of these two.

Jiiva as Varun Krishnan: Jiiva has once again proved that he is a great performer and essays the role of Varun with ease. He gives his best expressions and wears one kind of an attitude throughout the movie. He tries very hard to look like a school student though.

Samantha as Nithya Vasudevan: Samantha has done justice to her role by not just performing properly, but also by dubbing her own voice. Her expressions are appropriate and she fits into the role perfectly.

Santhanam as Prakash: Santhanam comes in as Varun's close friend in college and manages to make us laugh with his rib tickling one liners and expressions and also gets to spoof Gautham Menon's earlier venture 'Vinnaithandi Varuvaya'. He can also be called a 'relief' in few scenes where the narration is quite slow. And the best part- he has also got a pair in the movie!

Vidulekha Raman as Jenny: An awesome find! Vidyulekha is Santhanam's pair in the movie and she has done an outstanding job which would in fact gain her a lot of attention. She sets the audience to laughter along with Santhanam.

Gautham Menon: The story is a typical Gautham Menon type and it also has few trademark scenes and dialogues which will make you go "Gautham's movie,okay?". The story is engaging and relate-able, but the dialogues are too lengthy. Many scenes are shot at a stretch from the same angle which at times triggers boredom in us.

Ilayaraja: The actual hero of the whole film. Gautham has made the best use of the maestro and the songs are appropriately placed( though they come once in every few minutes or so) according to the situation. The background music is also apt to the situations and Ilayaraja has done justice to the songs whole-heartedly!

Now, I'll give you few points why and why shouldn't you go for the movie( Yeah. The positives and negatives)

You should go: Ilayaraja's music, Gautham Menon's movie, This could be your life story(which is also the tag line of the title), the lead characters acting and to while away 3 hours.

You shouldn't go: Slow and irksome, The 'I hate romance' characters, lengthy dialogues.

Overall, Gautham Menon takes us all for a beautiful romantic trip. Mr. Menon, but the ship is moving too slow!

Stars: 7.8/10

What's happening in India..

A para-medical student, who was travelling in a bus with her male friend was gang raped by a group of men when the bus was running and was thrown out of the vehicle. She is now admitted in the hospital with critical physical injuries. This is actually not new in a metropolitan city- several cases of physical and sexual assault have taken place before, brought to the notice of the public, taken to the court and have got their respective results. But one question burns in everyone's mind: Though such people know that they are going to be caught and punished under the law, they still commit such crime in public, and to everyone's notice. What gives them the dare to do such things? Don't they think about the consequences they are going to face? The social media has become so convenient to share videos relating to any crime/ such incident happening in any part of the world. In fact, the teenage girl who was stripped and assaulted was recorded and first published on youtube. It was only after an hour or so the police rushed to the spot and started investigating. And what was the public doing? They just witnessed the incident happening before their eyes. No-one festinated or rushed to the police, nor did they call and inform them. Few weeks back there was another allegation made by a North Eastern woman saying that she was verbally and physically abused by a gang of men (including a traffic police man) on a busy street in Bangalore. There have been major discussions about such issues in the media. There have been debates among people and service men regarding the safety of women in India. But, where is the finishing line? The race is going on and on and on.
                                            Being a girl, I have faced a lot of problems because of miscreants and the so-called 'Roadside Romeos'. A girl cannot stand in the bus stop without getting noticed. Men around us (of all ages) keep staring and notice each and everything we do. Constant commenting, signalling and sometimes getting closer happens.They chirp, whistle or even go the extent of singing to seek our attention. Inside the bus, they try to feel us( I am sorry if it sounds vulgar, but that's the ugly truth) and sometimes get so close. Few men even follow girls without their knowledge or peep into their identity cards looking for information(Beware!).In simple words, it can be called 'men menace'.
                                             I am not blaming the gender as a whole. Neither all the police men. For instance, one of my friends narrated an incident where a 40 year old man, a pervert, went around the bus stop touching women without their conscious. My friend and few others saw this and reported in a nearby police station. Two policemen immediately rushed to the bus stop and caught the pervert with the help of these girls. I actually appreciated my friend instead of talking about the greatness of the police. The police just did their job, but what these girls did was service. I am again making it clear- I am not blaming Shiela Dixit or Jagadish Shetter for not running a proper system, nor I am blaming the police men of our country. I entirely feel the situation of a particular city or a state depends on the public and their role in the society. Just awareness is not enough-we have to make sure that the entire public, minus status issues, should participate in activities against injustice. Only then the police will perform their job better, rather than repudiating the allegations made by us. A robust body should be brought in and the rules should become stringent that  offenders should get scared to commit crime. It's high time we all put our hands to welcome this change, instead of crying  over spilt milk. Let us succeed in our endeavour!

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

THUPPAKKI REVIEW: Entertaining and Engaging!

I am back with Thuppakki! Yes.. the Vijay starrer.. A good movie which has good acting from all sides.
Definitely one of the most entertaining film of the year!
Vijay as Jagadish: He has proved that he is the hero of the masses..yet again! He looks very composed and carries off his character with style. He reacts to situations appropriately and does not disappoint the audience. He looks as fit as a fiddle and also seems to have worked for perfection in his Hindi dialogues.

Kajal Agarwal as Nisha: Jagadish's lady love. She fits into the role perfectly and has worked a lot on her lip sync. She looks charming. Her dubbed voice is annoying though.

Vidyut Jamwal: People always have various reasons to watch a certain film again. My reason for watching thuppakki again would be VIDYUT JAMWAL. He's the show stopper..He's one of these good looking villians in Indian cinema. He flaunts his awesome physique and performs the baddie role with ease! (Ladies..Watch out!)

Others: The cast also includes Sathyan, Jayram ,Deepti Nambiar et al. Sathyan comes in as Vijay's friend , Jayram as Vijay's senior officer(who plays a comical role) and Deepti as Vijay's sister. They all have done justice to their respective roles.

A.R Murugadoss has done an excellent job. The story flows smoothly and keeps you engaged. The dialogues and screenplay are equally excellent. He also appears in a cameo role in the famous 'Google google..' song!
The biggest disappointment- Harris Jeyraj's music. The songs are boring! It arouses the feeling of 'I've heard it somewhere'. The BGMs seem to have been copied from Harris' previous compositions (Ayan, KO etc.). The songs which keep coming once in a while are the biggest turn offs in the film. You'll probably be like "Is there going to be another song?" whenever the love sequences pop up!

On the whole, Thuppakki is entertaining and engaging.. It is definitely a treat to watch in all aspects!Enjoy watching it! :)

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Last but not lonely!

Hello Bloggies!
It's been a long time since I posted something new.
My English teacher in my college had asked us to pen a story or a poem on the topic 'I am the last person on this earth'.
Initially I thought how jobless English teachers were to come up with such ideas. I made it a point to sit quietly and look at my fellow classmates work on it and present it before the class.
I then realised what kind of a loser I am because every person in every corner of the class seemed to be seriously writing. A couple of them had also finished writing and were already presenting it to the class. I immediately took out my pen and started drafting few of my wildest thoughts on survival on this earth as the last person.I thought technically, scientifically and all the '-callys' one could come up with. I then got this awesome rhyme scheme on my head and started noting it down before I could forget it. And you won't believe it- I actually came out with this:


Dark and deep, awaken from sleep
Hearing a sound like a weep
Got up and realized the world was gone
And I was the only one left alone
Then who was the one who knocked?
Because the things out there never walked
I trembled with fright, with no-one near
Too scared to even drop a tear
The knock and the weep continued harder
And I couldn’t take it any longer
I opened the door, filled with fear
And lo! It was my brother, Oh my dear!

I suddenly felt proud of myself and was thinking of how my teacher would react to it. By that time almost 30 students had presented their stories to ma'am. I rose and rushed towards her to show my demiurgic piece. The moment I reached ma'am's table, 'Trrrrrrrrriingggggggggggg'. What else? The bell rang. I still didn't lose hope and handed my book to her. She glanced at me and told "Later, please!". I swore at myself. What a waste of my creativity! I found myself in dismay for the next few minutes and then wondered "For what reason do I have a blog?". Now you know why I've posted this here.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Book review-Life is what you make it by Preeti Shenoy

Life is what you make it,written by Preeti Shenoy, is a gripping account of few significant years of the protagonist's life.The stories is set in the early eighties and revolves around Ankita Sharma and the journey of her life post teenage,in two different cities-Kochi and Mumbai.Ankita is described as a good looking,smart and a modern girl who is academically successful and talented.She has 3 different love interests in her 3 phases of life-school,college and MBA university and the story revolves around how one of these 3 men cause a dramatic change in her life.Till her graduation at St.Agnes in Kochi,she is just like any other girl,enjoying her college and romantic life.The story takes a twist when she is about to leave to Mumbai for her MBA course.A series of tragic events take place which lands her in a mental health hospital,six months later.Preeti Shenoy has sketched the character of Ankita in a beautiful and sublime manner, although the other characters in the book manage to reach only the periphery.The use of medical terms are made meticulously and the book is completely reader friendly.The first half of the book can be simply related to anyone's life,but once the twist in the story arrives,it makes one wonder what would happen if a tragedy ike this knocks their door.It is a truly heart touching story and as the subscript of the title says,it is in fact 'A story of love,hope and how determination can overcome even destiny'.Hats off Preeti Shenoy!