ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Death of a Dai

In the case of childbirth, obstetrics is equated with development-modernity, while dais symbolise the lacking space which needs to be either co-opted through training or obliterated. The state, in its approval of this modernising project, offers several incentives and disincentives, even as everyday practice and the choices women make on the ground indicate a far complex reality. By moving through the life story of a real dai, this article underscores the absurdities and ironies that waylay the grand project of development-modernity in its journey towards its goal.

Medical Self-Regulation

The 25 state medical councils and the apex body, the Medical Council of India, were set up to regulate practitioners registered with them. However, the self-regulatory bodies themselves often made news by getting mired in corrupt activities. Taking the case of the Maharashtra Medical Council as an illustration, this article discusses how it emerged from the controversies surrounding it and also looks at how it can better its functioning.

Child Sex Ratio and the Politics of 'Enemisation'

India's child sex ratio has gone awry despite several monitoring and corrective mechanisms. The root of the problem, the very "undesirableness" of daughters, is not remotely dealt with by the state which has adopted a modus operandi of "enemisation" of the offenders. In this world view, the state is vested with power and authority, while blame and responsibility lie with the guilty individuals. A look at the concept of enemisation in the context of India's skewed CSR argues that often the state's acts of "doing good" for the people are informed by the politics of enemisation.

'Hands on Learning' in Medicine: Who Benefits?

Patients who access the teaching hospitals are often examined by more than one doctor - usually a group of medical students who learn on the patient. This raises serious issues about taking consent, the patients' agency and ethics in practice. It is explained away, however, on the grounds that since these patients get subsidised/free treatment, they should shoulder the responsibility of letting doctors learn on their bodies. But do these patients have no rights to demand or deny anything? How can the situation be addressed, given that doctors really need to learn?
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