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Showing posts from January 17, 2016

My Caux Story

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Dr. Nidhi Shendurnikar Ahmedabad, India
Stories are powerful. Stories make experiences come alive. One of the best means to positive transformation, dialogue and healing can be found in the form of story-telling. This is why, today, I choose to tell a story. This is my Caux story. The story of my time at the Caux Scholars Program (CSP) at Asia Plateau, in Panchgani (India).

Come to think of it and I almost did not make it to the CSP at Asia Plateau (AP). I received an acceptance letter from Jitka-Hromek Vaitla, the program coordinator informing me of my admission to the program with a scholarship in September 2015. After which, I traveled to Australia and New Zealand with family in November only to land up working in a new project upon my return to India in December. Taking out three weeks time for the Caux training was quite a task when I had only just started working on a new project. So, I decided to let this opportunity go. Of course, I was unhappy about it and informed Jitka that I …

To Be or Not to Be ... Natsamrat

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How often do you get to watch a movie that is not just a three hour entertainment package delivered to you on screen, but more than that? A movie that is a lived experience for its audience. I watched one such movie recently. Of late, the Marathi movie industry has been producing some excellent stuff, with innovative story lines and bold characters. Director Mahesh Manjrekar has been at the forefront of this cinematic revolution. Anytime, I venture in to watch a Marathi movie, my expectations automatically turn sky high because Marathi cinema, over the past few years has actually spoilt its viewers for choice. Last week I watched the Nana Patekar starrer Natasamrat which means 'King of the theatre scene'. Through its trailers and subject, one feels that Natsamrat is a typically serious, art-oriented movie. And that it is. But deep inside, the movie offers a very enchanting story of an old man who once reigned the theatre scene in Maharashtra. With this, it offers ample life le…

When Indians and Pakistanis talk to each other

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A pioneering initiative of The Red Elephant Foundation (Chennai, India), The Building Peace Project (2014-15), in its first season was weaved around an unflinching belief in the power of citizen driven interactions through new media technology. Young people from conflict zones can come together on a shared platform to talk to each other. Nine pairs of Indians and Pakistanis undertook a year long journey of exchange, interaction, collaboration and friendship under the umbrella of The Building Peace Project. Post the year long interaction and exchange, these ambassadors of peace in India and Pakistan express their ideas on what the project meant to them, how they built everlasting friendships and acquired sensitivity and understanding to accommodate differing perspectives. These young people have been able to shed the baggage of historical animosity and disseminate their own version of what it means to be 'friends' with the 'enemy'. Their stories of peace, here, in their…