Browsed by
Author: pukarmail

PUKAR EZINE: April – July, 2015

PUKAR EZINE: April – July, 2015

PUKAR EZINE: April – July, 2015


PUKAR’s New Partners in Youth Leadership Building

EdelGive Foundation: Barefoot Researchers for Better Communities

PUKAR’s ‘Barefoot Researchers for Better Communities’ program anchored in the fundamental principle of Community Based Participatory Action Research, validated and admired by many international academic institutions has been fortunate to be supported by EdelGive Foundation that has been established to build a strong, efficient and high-impact social sector for a better India. With an aim to leverage the capacity and capital of the for-profit world to equip and enable the social sector to achieve the greatest impact on the lives of the poor in India, EdelGive makes a perfect partner for our Barefoot Researchers. They would be supporting a new batch of 20 community-based youth starting July 2015-June 2016.The outreach and selection process for the next cycle of fellowship has begun, and the program will begin in August 2015.

St. Xavier’s College Autonomous, Mumbai

Research as a tool for Perspective Building, Knowledge Production, Community Engagement & Advocacy

PUKAR and the Department of Mass Media of St. Xavier’s College Autonomous have joined hands to launch a course which will integrate community engagement and the skills of research in order to create conscious, thinking citizens who bring about social change.

This year, 30 students have opted for this optional course which began with an orientation workshop with Mr. Nitin Paranjape, (Founder of Abhivyakti, Nasik and Faciltator at Swaraj Univeristy, Udaipur) on 26th-27th July at the PUKAR Office, Bandra. Through interactive games and stimulating discussions the students came face to face with issues of teamwork and developed strategies. The workshop also exposed them to their first community based activity, in which they went into Behrampada, a neighbourhood, to interview youth who are engaged in different livelihood sectors. This process exposed them to the vast difference in the privileges between themselves and the people they interacted with, forcing them to think about the disparities of opportunity that determine various relations in the city. In the following months, the students will be offered various workshops on research skills which will enable them to conduct a comprehensive research study on the topic of their interest.

Youth Fellowship: Moving On…..

India Development Service (IDS), Chicago: Barefoot Researchers for Better Communities
Gunvati J. Kapoor Foundation and Khalsa College: Youth Leaders as Changemakers

The Barefoot Researchers fellowship program entered its final stage of data analysis and research dissemination (May to July). Our Fellows returned from the field enriched by the data collection process which gave them new perspectives about their research questions. As they were entering the phase of data analysis, Mr. Haresh Dalvi, guided them on how to sort through their data, picking out the relevant portions to better explain the phenomena. The researchers spent weeks with their facilitator reading and re-reading the interviews. Aided by Ms. Reetika Subramanium, who discussed with them various forms of explanative writing, the groups compiled their understanding into a strongly analytical yet reader-friendly report with well-founded conclusions and strong recommendations. They then went back to their communities to share their findings with insightful and interactive presentations; while some used the medium of theatre and others chose photography as a tool for dissemination and discussion on the issue.

On 2nd July 2015, Youth Leaders as Changemakers Fellows presented their research in the presence of the principal, Dr. Kiran Mangaonkar, and their fellow college mates and teachers. At the end of the ceremony the fellows were felicitated with certificates. The researchers later exhibited their research in front of over 200 people, including many of their respondents, at the University of Mumbai on 25th July 2015.

These unique stories found a place in the popular media (see, Scroll, Mid-day and Indian Express) thereby taking the conversation to many more people.

The outreach and selection process for the next year of the fellowship has begun, and the cycle will begin in August 2015.

Gandhian Studies Centre of Dr. BMN College of Home Science
Research as Pedagogy, Advocacy and Transformation

In April 2015, the researchers  from the nutrition studies compiled their findings into 3 substantial reports which reflected a rich analysis of their research topics as well as their transformation into critical thinkers as a part of the research process. On 29th July 2015, in the presence of Vice Principal, Prof. Mala Pandurang, and Dr. Meena Mehta, the students presented their work to their classmates and responded to various questions regarding their findings. The discussion was interesting and proved to be yet another step into deepening their understanding about an issue that had previously been full of questions.


Research On Internet: In Collaboration with IIT-Bombay.

Research on Internet Access (RIA) Team, took the bold step of blurring the boundaries between urban and rural and took up the daunting task of building capacities of villagers in the tribal district of Palghar, enabling them to become active citizens of Digital India movement.  During the past four months, with the help of their team of 57 E-Sevaks (Barefoot Researchers) the Team has created video modules of 20 Government schemes that are specific for rural population while another 30 are work in progress. The E-Sevaks are going door to door, teaching these modules to all the villagers so that they could start utilizing the services. Meanwhile IIT-B Team, under the guidance of Professor Abhay Karandikar, placed all the necessary equipment required to deliver Internet to these three villages (Bahadoli, Khamloli & Dhuktan) by means of using the experimental TV White Space Spectrum.  IIT-B also gifted one computer kiosk in each village, fully equipped with a printer.  This facility has enabled villagers to  get acquainted with the concept of computers, internet, download, upload and other technologies that would eventually change their lives for better.   Meanwhile the RIA team is busy building the capacity of their E-Sevaks  on various socio-political issues through multi-media presentations.


PUKAR’s collaborative project with Foundation for Medical Research on finding cases of TB in Kaula Bandar (KB) entered the final stage. After completing interviews of 1798 individuals, the 277 chest symptomatic adults and 38 children were further investigated as per protocol that included x-rays, sputum examinations and Mantoux Test for children under five. Eight Adults and one child were started on treatments. The most difficult challenge for the team and our Barefoot Researchers who live in KB was related to convincing symptomatic people to go for free chest x-ray.  For most daily wage workers, taking time away meant losing one day’s salary and the stigma  that comes with the possibility of harbouring TB.  Both these factors played a significant role in preventing many symptomatic adults to pursue the investigations further. This fact only reiterated the need for continuous raising awareness about TB in the community and the Healthy City Team has been busy doing just the same.

PUKAR (Partners for Urban Knowledge, Action and Research)

Address: 272, Municipal Tenements, Shivaji Nagar, BMC Colony, Kher Wadi, Bandra (East),
Mumbai – 400 051
Telephone: +91 (22) 6574 8152
Fax: +91 (22) 26474872




PUKAR is an independent research collective and an innovative urban knowledge producing institution that aims to contribute to the discourse on urbanization and globalization.



PUKAR in News (April to August, 2015)

PUKAR in News (April to August, 2015)

Shaped by their own experiences, Rahenaz, Mubhashirin Naik and Zareen Sayed — are now charting a silent revolution on the streets of Mumbra. The three girls are trying to ensure that menstruation is no longer considered a taboo. Shattering misconceptions about menstrual cycles, these girls are pushing the envelope in a suburb where women have traditionally been relegated to a secondary role. Here is an inspiring story which was covered in Hindustan Times.

Miffed residents of Lallubhai Compound in Mankhurd conduct their own survey to highlight abysmal living conditions with the help of PUKAR. Please read their story of empowerment here (

“We want people to identify themsleves as artistes and not beggers- says Nikita Tiwari, Barefoot Researchers at PUKAR. Please follow her research group’s story on train performers here. (

Young minds talk Mumbai: As part of annual youth fellowship programme, PUKAR saw over 65 young students participate in a project titled Barefoot Researchers for Better Communities that aims to contribute to a global debate about urbanisation and globalisation through community based participatory action research. Read more here (

A team of Barefoot Researchers explored how language barriers affect students once they leave school for higher education. Many of the students they interviewed reported receiving prejudicial comments connecting their attire to their language competence. “Just because I wear a burqa, people have assumed that I come from an Urdu school, even though I have not,” said Bushra Girach, another group member. Here is detailed story covered by


“As a society, we have systematically shut down voices of the marginalised. When we talk of youth empowerment today, is it only related to those youngsters who have digital access. The others also need a platform to break this culture of silence. Their research is what gives them a sense of freedom and liberation”- says Program Facilitator at PUKAR. On the conetxt of Independence day, The Indian Express covered story of Barefoot Researcehers, please read full story here