For the unprecedented year that went by, and for all that it brought with it- the fears, the uncertainty, the agony, peppered with some hope somewhere, what kept us, at YKA, going was the one thing constant- Our Users. On days when we grappled with the incoherent reality of an unexpected pandemic, we found solace in the empathic stories our users shared with us, from nooks and corners of the country, giving us the assurance that we were all in this together and that this too shall pass.
Many shared their perspective on issues over and beyond, because however stagnant life may have felt, Covid-19 didn’t enter lives in isolation- and our users ensured they continued to speak up, breaking not just taboos and stereotypes, but also the silence on many matters that stayed uncovered by mainstream media- matters of relevance, matters the youth cares for, matters YOU care for! And while all our users continue to create impact, here’s a list of our top 20 users this year, who spoke up, shattered conventions, drove home a point and how!
Ishita Bagchi: Ishita’s posts have been inclusive in the truest sense of terms! From talking about the state of public washrooms in Kolkata to the plight of the garment chains during the COVID-19 pandemic, her posts gave voice to issues that many chose to forget! This young writer is striving for change through the strength of her words and beyond!
Srishti Pandey: Srishti’s impactful journey as a writer on YKA, her candid narrative on the challenges brought about by the pandemic for persons with disability, and her frank, unminced account of the condemnable stigma associated with disability, all encompass the power and might of this young writer’s mind!
Pragya Uike: What commenced with a heart-felt poem on caste-based discrimination, is Pragya’s ever ascending journey at YKA. An Action Network Fellow, and a consistently impactful writer on the platform, she shall stop at nothing. Passionate about issues concerning, but not limited to, the Adivasi community and socio-political affairs, Pragya’s work defines YKA’s efforts on expunging caste-based inequality plaguing India.
IndraJeet Ghorpade: From calling out homophobic practices by supposedly progressive brands, to speaking out on the queerphobia that headlines tend to miss, Jeet’s consistent coverage is much-needed in the fight for an inclusive world!
Ritushree: From calling out homophobia and the wrongs in queer dating-platforms, to speaking up against politically motivated communalism and the stigma associated with mental health, this fierce writer has been vocal about multiple issues- fearless, undaunted and articulate in her expression!
Ifra Ali: Ifra has frequently published posts on YKA this year. Her story sharing her experience of Islamophobia and battling stereotypes was really well-received by the YKA community. A compelling writer, Ifra’s style of narration can inspire many young people, who can relate to her experiences, to share their own story as candidly and uninhibited.
Jaimine: From talking about caste to stirring important conversations about threat to democracy in 2020, Jaimine contributed to various discourses through authentic and pertinent angles. His work surely contributes to important perspectives in the domains of education, society and politics.
Malvika Dangwal: From covering diverse issues and concerns surrounding the length and breadth of Bihar to demanding responsibility and better governance through her fiery words, if there’s one word that can sum up Malvika’s passion for a better India, it’s consistency in her efforts to demand it! Malvika, also a Community Editor at YKA now, possesses the double prowess of invoking thought, attention through poetry and prose alike!
Abha Thapliyal : Adding a touch of relatability in her compelling stories on issues related to gender violence, education, mental health, and menstruation and the associated stigma, Abha has consistently voiced her uninhibited opinion on matters that stared us in the face all year round.
Tina Sequeira : Through her powerful and thought provoking articles on pertinent issues related to gender, disability, culture and education, Tina continues to write inspiring and impactful stories, as she did last year, with the power of her unfettered words.
Akshay Sonawane: A political enthusiast, with an inherent love for writing, Akshay has consistently and passionately covered issues related to governance, current affairs and politics. With his unparalleled fervour for ‘uncovered’ news, he’s steadily drawn readers, focusing on issues that actually count!
Sarah Jacob: With a focus on gender violence and social issues, Sarah has a unique perspective on everyday things that perhaps matter the most, but often go unaddressed. With her impactful stories and her fierce opinions, ‘Sarah Jacob’ is a recurring name among YKA editors.
Dr Aqsa Shaikh: Dr Aqsa’s style of writing and her approach to talking about issues, from gender to politics, always leaves us waiting for her next piece! Her posts always add more nuance to the discussions we foster on YKA.
Melanie Dhar: A student, activist and an intersectional feminist, Melanie has covered various intrinsic issues on menstruation through multiple lens. From talking about why Safroora Zargar’s pregnancy should be a rallying point for her release to spreading awareness about using eco-friendly and sustainable menstrual products, Melanie has introduced new concepts and ideas about menstruation, one article at a time.
Devyani Rabindranath: With her forthright stance on period positivity, this young writer has left no stone unturned in talking about inclusive healthcare, medical rights of transexual persons, patriarchal taboos and the fears that young India is grappling with during the pandemic. Passionate, vociferous and eloquent, Devyani does justice to every issue she chooses to address.
Ritwik Trivedi: One of YKA’s most active users, Ritwik has seized every opportunity to talk about every social, economic and political development in the country, raising his voice against every injustice that happened in the past year.
Souvik Dutta: A fearless analyst of politics and a strong detractor of patriarchal norms, Souvik has shared powerful commentaries all year round on socio-political issues, impacting the nation and the world at large. His sheer flair for writing, and his strongly worded opinions always leave us wanting more.
Rupsa Nag: From tracing period taboos and awareness across three generations, to breaking taboos around period sex, from raising her voice against the oft ignored pain and trauma of domestic workers to normalising conversations around period pain and vaginal discharge, Rupsa has put her curiosity to the best use by breaking stigma and spreading awareness about menstruation as a subject in the society.
Manish Dutta: A regular contributor at YKA, Manish has written extensively on gender-based issues, which also helped him understand and engage with his own privilege! From his on-ground coverage of the devastation that cyclone Amphan wreaked, to campus issues, his articles provide narratives that mainstream media misses.
Anonymous Reporter: We’ve seen their notable journey as a writer on YKA, from talking about their experience of being trolled online, to joining the Writers Training Program earlier this year. Their passion when it comes to writing on, and speaking out about gender-based issues is inspiring to say the least!