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Sanjeev Jain

The 300 Ramayanas and the District Mental Health Programme

The web version of this article corrects a few errors that appeared in the print edition.

With the completion of the Eleventh Five-Year Plan, an appraisal of the mental health initiative in the space of state-sponsored health delivery seems appropriate and timely. Discourses in health delivery usually tend to implement similar sets of tools. This article argues that to achieve some form of clarity it may be appropriate to look at health delivery through the lenses of the social sciences. In this attempt, the article uses the metaphor of 300 Ramayanas and the tools of A K Ramanujan to review thinking about the District Mental Health Programme.

International Advisers to the Bhore Committee

Perceptions and Visions for Healthcare

The Bhore Committee constituted by the colonial government in 1943 to address the needs of healthcare in India was assisted a year later by a group of international advisers. These advisers, coming from an eclectic and divergent background, shared the view that universal and free access to medical care was imperative and that this was an essential political right of the people of India.

Partition and the Mentally Ill

This is in response to the letter by P R Chari entitled “Siachen in the Time of Manto” (EPW, 9 June 2012) on the continuing relevance of Manto and the use of the story “Toba Tek Singh” wherein the protagonist’s madness is taken as a metaphor for contemporary geopolitics. However, the reality behind the metaphor is equally, if not more tragic.

On 31 July 1947, Earl Mountbatten notes in his daily diary (Mountbatten India Office Records L/PO/6/123 part 3/p 222, Para 56):