MAHIMA PODDAR, 21
Mahima Poddar is currently an undergraduate student, pursuing her Bachelors of Business Administration (BBA) at the Kathmandu University School of Management. Poddar uncovered her passion for writing in high school. This became a major turning point in her life where she began to realize the power of words and how they could be used to tell stories and amplify social change.
As a result of her commitment to journalism, her articles have now been published on multiple platforms, including EdInbox.com and The Himalayan Times, a national daily newspaper of Nepal. In 2017, with the goal of pursuing her passion, she began working for online media portals, such as Glocal Khabar. As a media reporter, she primarily focuses on social justice issues facing youth, like mental health stigmatization and education inequality. Poddar believes that with journalism is the best tool for social change to raise awareness.
Among other talents, Poddar is an accomplished public speaker whose skills landed her an award in 2017 as one of Nepal’s “Top 7 Debaters.” She believes in the importance of being critical and engaging in social activism through understanding multiple perspectives. Poddar hopes to continue her career in journalism through writing stories about youth and other entrepreneurs like herself working to create change and develop Nepal.
Poddar stands firmly in the belief that young minds have the ability to transform the world for the better and that through unity, young people can come together and work towards giving a voice to the voiceless all over the world.
When I was a Kid
by Mahima Poddar
When I was a kid, even the thought of environmental destruction and its consequences used to give me goosebumps all over my body. Today I am bound to face this reality. Who am I supposed to consider responsible for this? Can we always play the blame game for something that we all know we are all equally responsible for? While we play this game, Mother Nature is sick and tired of all the lies of natural conservation. Today we witness Mother Nature’s anger in the form of various natural disasters all over the world.
When I was a kid, I used to play hide and seek in the park, hiding behind the long trees to lay a perfect trap. Today, I see little kids playing hide and seek with their parents; their parents hell bent in hiding electronic gadgets and the kids are hell bent to play with them. Where I grew up, lush greenery has rapidly been replaced by concrete grey buildings. We have become so inclined towards technological development that we do not see the beauty around us.
When I was a kid, winters and summers used to wave us hello and goodbye like clockwork but today I laugh when I have to switch on a fan in December. I console myself, saying, “this is only the beginning of global warming and we can reverse it.”
When I was a kid, pollution was a subject I learned by heart for spitting it out in my examinations. Today, as I witness actual pollution, it simultaneously amuses me and scares me. How perfect is Mother Nature? Did she warn us of all these consequences? Did I take her warnings seriously? Did any of us take it seriously? Maybe if we had, headlines like “1 on 5 people now suffer from cancer”; “Earthquake takes millions of lives” would not exist.
When I was a kid, I was scared of dying but I always knew Mother Nature would be there with her Ayurvedic cures. Today I see Mother Nature dying and I sadly possess no medicines that can cure her disease and bring her back to life. I know the cure lies jointly in all of our hands and just one cry, one effort or one hand won’t do enough to bring back Mother Nature from the hell that we pushed her into.
When we were kids, we all found the ultimate bliss in Mother Nature. Why not now? Our bright touchscreens will never give us the pleasure the lush greenery used to give us. It’s high time that we accept this reality and take a step ahead towards the protection of what belongs to all of us and to which all of us belong to.
They say a mother’s heart is selfless. If not for myself, I must have the capability for my kids and for all the generations to come. I must give them all that they deserve – natural and unnatural. If I snatch from the future generations the joy of getting lost into woods, I know they will never forgive me.
When I was a kid, I didn’t take Mother Nature’s siren song seriously - I called it a false alarm! Now that I am older, I know that Mother Nature’s responsibility has fallen upon my shoulders. Instead of dusting my shoulders off, I want to be strong enough so that my kids can stand upon the same shoulders and I can proudly show them their Godmother.