Providing guidance to the students of DU since 2008 on matters of sex, dating and intimacy, Amma is back again this week with her dose of advice.


Question: My best friend is getting into a very toxic relationship and somehow she can’t see it. Do I make peace with it or should I go beyond my way to stop her, because it is affecting our friendship?

My dearest idli,

Maturity comes both with age and experience, but in relationships there is no real expertise and you might make new mistakes every time. For starters, give your bestie, a suitable space to have her own opinions. There is no problem between two friends that cannot be solved without talking, so have a serious chit-chat session over chai or hot chocolate. Be open towards hearing her opinion and also try to understand her stance as to why this relationship is so important to her. Instead of focusing on your perspective of the relationship, try to see how she perceives it.

Your Amma would always tell you to let out the feelings. Keeping things bottled up would only make you feel nauseous and uncomfortable. So, try to confront her about your feelings and understand her point of view. I know, it is often difficult to directly express your feelings, but believe me kanna, it’s the best solution to get out of any mess. There is no mess that can’t be cleared with a heartfelt conversation along with good food and coke. Don’t make the same mistake as me of creating an ego wall and acting all cool with a no-fucks-given attitude. Take my word, it only makes things worse.

If even after this serious conversation, she can’t see the “toxic” side, it is for you to understand, my dear macchi, that you can’t take over the decisions of her life. It is ultimately on her to understand the dynamics of her relationship. You can simply be there for her. But being there is very different from being a “nosy” friend. I know, my kutty, that you are worried about her but we can’t impose our opinions on others. I think this is the best thing I have learnt from Gen Z, the concept of giving space, to realise and to learn. So don’t stress yourself out, you won’t lose your friend with your words. Trust the process and trust your friend (even if that means trusting things you don’t approve of).




Want to ask Amma a query? Mail it to [email protected].

Last night, I was involved in a heated argument with my school friend over the government’s efforts in containing the novel coronavirus in India. It started off as a healthy discussion as to what can be done to better the current situation but soon turned into a politically charged conversation. Now, that’s not us. Back in school, all that we discussed was cricket and WWE. Politics was never on the table. It was never meant to be but now that it is, learning to live with it is the only option left.

This is not the first time I have come across such situations. India has become a breeding ground of controversies since December 2019 when the amended Citizenship Act came into being. Nationwide protests, gruesome violence, student dissent took the centre stage. All this was followed by the worst riots Delhi has experienced in over 36 years. Escaping confrontations becomes difficult when so much happens so fast. I have had people agreeing with my opinions and others, discarding them. There’s always resistance, but when it is your friend opposing your point of view, it can be a hard pill to swallow. Why are we friends with anyone anyway? Largely because of the similarity in our thoughts and views. But when that common link seems doubtful, conflicts arise. You start doubting your friendship and it adversely affects you, mentally, socially, emotionally. All of this is accompanied by the urgent need to prove yourself right and the other, horribly wrong. A discussion that could have been fruitful turns unhealthy and violent. And to be honest, there’s no way to avoid these conflicts. Either you’ll choose friendship over your beliefs or vice-versa. Irrespective of the choice, you’ll be losing something valuable. So is there a middle ground? How do we deal with such conflicts?

Here are two things that, in my opinion, can put things into perspective:

Respecting Opinions

No matter how flawed their narratives may seem, you must learn to respect their opinions. Their choice of political parties/leaders/policies might not go down well with you but we must realise that everyone is entitled to think and process the way they do. That is exactly what we call a democracy, a concept that is not only fading away from India but many other countries as well. Our friends might support controversial judgements and legislations but rather than indulging in unhealthy and heated discourses, backing your arguments with logic and facts and presenting them with compassion is the way forward. And if this doesn’t work, try the next step.


One can always persuade the other into believing that his/her argument makes more sense but in the end, it’s always better to accept that people think and react differently. And those beliefs are a result of many variables, one of which, is privilege. The more privileged you are, more often than not, you’ll side with those in power. Privilege makes a man overlook the otherwise evident truth. In a nutshell, accept the fact that you and your friend differ in your politics and that consequently affects your bonding.

And all of this is not limited to friendships and can be extended to many other relationships as well. They might be your own relatives or family friends or boyfriends/girlfriends. So the next time you discuss politics with your dear one, do so with kindness and logic, the two cornerstones of a fruitful discussion.

Featured Image Credits: DU Beat Archives

Ayaan Khan is a 1st-year student pursuing a Bachelor’s in Statistics (H) at Ramjas College, University of Delhi. He’s particularly interested in Journalism and Poetry.

In such times of political turmoil, its easy to feel that everyone is divided into two opposite camps.With friends having opposite and clashing political ideologies, How are many students dealing with this?

The second term of the BJP Government has brought with it many divisive decisions , which have been open to debate and dissent. The country erupted in widespread dissent against the CAA-NRC-NPR, with many feeling that the act was unconstitutional and blatantly islamophobic with many common citizens taking to the streets to express their dissent on a daily basis, a lot of which is brutally repressed by state controlled machinery. On the other side of the spectrum, many supporters of the BJP and their ideology believe that the act is for the betterment of the country, and those protesting are simply disrupting law and order.

While It is easy to see this in a simple black and white spectrum, it is definitely not so. With many choosing to remain apolitical or without a firm stance. Faizan Salik, a second year student from Jamia Millia Islamia, a University that turned into a warzone by the Delhi Police in December, believes that being apolitical is rooted in privilege and debate is the way forward. He says “ Political Apathy is a really considerate commitment, in modern geopolitical warfare where politics has deep roots in shaping major decisions of life, remaining apolitical Or inconsiderate can just be a staunch pedestal to showcase your privilege. It’s entirely subjective on individual, but when opinions differ, I would personally like to engage in a debate & discussion to let others understand each other’s scope and if I am wrong it would help me to clear my stance. Clouded ideologies are only a way to commotion and stupidity.”

The idea of trying to be open to other ideologies is also not lost among some who identify with the political right. Samaksh Sharma, a second year student from  DU says “ There is a stereotype within the left that those from the right wing are blind supporters of Modi and all his policies and are not open for debate. While this might be true for some, I personally try to keep myself open and don’t see the sense in losing close friends over politics. One of my closest friends is actively protesting against CAA and police violence and I still speak to him everyday and we debate sometimes. While I am very neutral when it comes to the CAA, I believe that the Supreme Court should strike it down, as its introduction has only harmed the country.”

It is evident that some people are receptive and open to debate however that might not be the case always. When one is staunch and adamant in their thinking and ideology and is not receptive to facts or theoretical reasoning, the author feels that it is best in this case to minimise contact in such cases. One’s mental health should be prioritized in such times of turmoil, and sometimes it is best to avoid those who disregard, admonish, and demonize our point of view.

Prabhanu Kumar Das

[email protected]

 Feature Image Credits: Aditi Gutgutia for DU Beat

Screaming claims of the space for
dissent in the University of Delhi (DU)
inspire political actions in the young
students. But all that is political is
about power, and power is corruptible.
Or is it?

Places are political, period. George
Orwell believed that the very claims
which state art should not be political
are themselves political in nature.
In light of such factual pervasiveness
of politics, institutions dedicated to
free thinking- from schools to colleges-
inspire ideologies that divide people
into disjoint groups. These groups
are very easily identifiable when it
comes to college politics. Colleges,
no doubt, invite the voice of dissent,
and to some extent, dialogue, but the
objectivity is blurred by the division
and distance between ideologies.
The problems are there, and they are
amplified when inevitably, the personal
and the political mould into one.
What happens to friendships when
they are based on politics? Or, are they
simply alliances?
Every year, thousands of students
are added to the vast network of
thinkers in the DU. With this injection,
there is a surge of social demand
for validation and the need for a
definition. College politics gives an
ideal view of a pedestal to actualising
these aspirations for the new members
of the varsity. The problem, however,
swoops in not-so-subtly, in the likeness
of that third-year hunk at the college
orientation programme. It begins
with a chai at Sudama Tea Stall, and
sometimes even extends, to AMA
Cafe. It presents itself in the form of
trips to Kamla Nagar, to Satya Niketan,
to Ridge, and so on and so forth. It is
all very charming as long as you are
with seniors, because “you do not pay
for food when you are out with your
seniors,” and it gives one the idea of a
having a ‘friend’.
The first two months are spent in
extravagance because that is how we
‘sustain bonds’. But soon, elections
come into play, and all the laugh
is submerged in the cries of corny
sloganeering and pointlessly furious
campaigning. Questions like “Oh, but
what about the time we spent till 7
p.m, doing nothing and sitting in the
sports ground in a huge group of 17
people?” inculcate guilt and pressure
at the same time. The “too bad” in
response to this question hits for real,
and yet, it is never heard.
The substance to maintain a political
relevance extends dramatically for a
first-year student in the varsity. Almost
all DU students witness a working
democracy for the first time in their
first year of college. This working
model, however, is obsessed with
winning personal favours to sustain
its structure. For a lot of unsuspecting
first-year students, the induction into
the political circuit is as great as their
inevitable disillusionment of it is.
Diplomatic conversations, insinuations,
and indirect implications against the
‘opposition’ create an exclusive bond
between two people. But it is sad
how youngsters who look forward to
spending time with their seniors and
friends become a mere projection for
the latter. They become a crop to be
harvested in election season and it all
reeks of betrayal.
Politically, there are usually two kinds
of groups preaching the same thing:
advising caution against the other.
In this mental rift, it cannot be
expected for the subject of this
sermon to make a wise choice
instantly- which would be different
according to both (or more than two)
groups, as per their ideologies. In
the transitional phase, and in most
cases, far from home, first-year
idealists fall for the subtle shams and
promises of fantasies of the seniors.
There is no foolproof way to avoid
these interventions, and if anything,
these disillusionments serve only
to make you cynical. But it is in this
mental time, that experience enables
visibility of the organic from the
facade. Rush into the polling booths,
because a world of the organic awaits
you outside.

Feature Image Credits: DU Beat archives

Kartik Chauhan
[email protected]

Dear Best Friend,

As I write to you today, after delaying for so long, I am searching for the million words I had in my mind; words and thoughts I had to share with you. I am searching for the emotions and the ideas; the same emotions and ideas that wanted me to write to you because I failed to express them. As I falter in an ocean of feelings, relying on my capsizing emotions, I am given to perplexity and heartbreak. I could say a thousand words, and yet I wouldn’t. Partly because of my fear that having said these words to you would leave me wordless in this turbulence, and everything that reminds me of this finality; of this end.

Somehow, from a very remote idea of formality and airy pretensions, we blended into this solidarity. All about the senior-junior dynamics- the courtesy of conduct and the sense of staunch ‘devotion’- we were, all as juniors are, fed with these ideas of behaving with seniors. Notwithstanding all these regulations, the edict of our relationship has seen us becoming entirely friendly and in that, immensely devoted to each other, informedly and out of concern more than courtesy. Can I possibly thank you for being so annoyingly understanding, frustratingly mature, and hopelessly loving? Having established my incapacity at gratitude, how can I ever possibly say anything in mere words? I am flustered today, because there is so much to say, but there is not enough time.

Characteristically varying and settled in the spectrums of extremisms, we came to find a part of us in each other. Home away from home, a safe place, humanising the objects of oppression and love, you have been an absolutely delightful friend. An uncanny familiarity has it been that inspired such confidence in each other. How this loss of a home renders me bereft of the warmth and the comfort and the joy of a haven. All this time, I am sure has been for always. Knowing that this would last forever is no consolation at all, because I know better that that.

To an endless flow of gossips, radical discussions on literature and life, and the countless conspiracy theories and crises, there must be an end. And so it comes to an end, this endless joy. This joy, the acknowledgement of which was only ever multiplied by the constant sorrows that we lived through. I could say this and much more in a thousand words, but what’s more than saying that I would do it all over again with you? But I guess this is all the time we had; simply because we are all too familiar with broken promises made in faith. I wish you everything best in the world that awaits you. And I want you to know, that great things await you.

It would pain me to lose you to time. In fact, I might be losing you even now. Strangely, I knew you would go away, but I never feared I would lose you, and that kept me going. Fading away is only natural, but maybe we will not fade away so easily. Maybe in this parting, there is something more becoming. This reminds of a quote from Frodo Baggins at the end of The Return of The King, “How do you pick up the threads of an old life? How do you go on, when in your heart you begin to understand… there is no going back? There are some things that time cannot mend.”

Even if time draws people apart, it truly is something I expect will not affect us.

I think we will be fine, after all, so long as we are a ‘we’.

Feature Image Credits: DU Beat archives

Kartik Chauhan

[email protected]