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Episode 2 of 5

Agony aunt Irma Kurtz talks to her Indian counterpart Bachi Kakaria, focusing on her 'Giving Gyan' newspaper advice column. From July 2014.

Irma Kurtz, Cosmopolitan magazine's Agony Aunt for over 40 years, talks to a different agony aunt from around the world for each programme in this series.

She speaks to Aunts from America, India, Australia, Egypt and South Africa, and reflects on the universal and contrasting problems that occur in their particular society. These Aunts, many of whom have dramatic personal lives themselves, offer advice in newspaper columns, on radio phone-ins and on-line.

Irma draws on her ample experience to offer a useful perspective on their approach to problem solving. Together they discuss the problems specific to their communities and listeners hear examples of some of the letters they receive and the advice given.

Programme 2: Bachi Kakaria, India.
Irma talks Bachi Kakaria, who writes her advice column Giving Gyan in two Indian newspapers, the Mumbai Mirror and the Bangalore Mirror.

Giving Gyan translates roughly as 'laying it on the line', and Bachi certainly does that. This is a very different style of agony aunting to the one we're used to. She is level headed and empathetic but doesn't wrap her advice in any sentiment, as her strap line intimates: 'There are agony aunts and then there's Bachi, she'll sort you out'.

Her qualifications, she says, are none - other than a close observation of life, personal and professional. Her post bag reflects the concerns particularly of young people who, after years of Indian socialism, have been plunged into consumerism. On the one hand there is liberalism and, on the other, conservatism - so there is confusion and conflict in the minds of India's young.

Produced by Ronni Davis
A White Pebble Media production for BBC Radio 4.

Available now

15 minutes

Last on

Wed 7 Dec 2016 02:15


Role Contributor
Presenter Tom Sutcliffe
Interviewed Guest Grayson Perry
Interviewed Guest Penelope Curtis
Interviewed Guest Philip Davis
Interviewed Guest Nicholas Lovell
Producer Katy Hickman


  • Mon 21 Jul 2014 09:30
  • Tue 11 Nov 2014 13:45
  • Tue 6 Dec 2016 14:15
  • Wed 7 Dec 2016 02:15