SC to hold workshop on long-term mental distress due to Covid

New Delhi, Sep 14 (IANS) In a unique initiative to address long-term psychological distress due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Supreme Court will organise a workshop on addressing mental health issues on Tuesday in collaboration with the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences.

On September 12, Chief Justice S.A. Bobde had said the Supreme Court will undertake a new initiative to deal with mental health issues and provide professional mental health advice.

According to a statement, the Chief Justice has launched this initiative to ensure overall wellness and to create awareness amongst the stakeholders — officers and officials of the registry, advocates as well as litigants – and to enable them to deal with the strain, fear and anxieties induced by the pandemic.

“In the wake of these stressful and testing times, the leaders in the administration need to lead from the front and ensure overall wellness of all the subordinates, besides keeping themselves mentally strong and well equipped to cope up with the stress and anxiety,” said a statement.

Delivering a special talk at a virtual launch of a book by former Supreme Court judge Justice R. Banumathi, the Chief Justice on Saturday had emphasised on the need to focus on mental health, as a fall-out of the pandemic are depressive tendencies and unnecessary aggression.

“As first step, an interactive workshop ‘Mind Matters' is being organised in collaboration with the Director, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, Delhi on September 15 at 3.30 p.m. in the Multipurpose Hall, ‘C' Block, Additional Building Complex, and Supreme Court of India. All the officers of the rank of Registrars and Additional Registrars will join the workshop,” said a top official.

The origin of this workshop has been visualised by the Chief Justice to manage stress, fear, anxiety and worries that are common responses due to uncertainty raised during Covid-19 pandemic, against the backdrop of this unprecedented situation.

According to officials familiar with the development, although the apex court administration has been focusing on the physical safety of all concerned from the contagion of Covid-19, studies have indicated long-term psychological distress due to the pandemic.

The learning from the experience of the workshop interactive programmes will be arranged for others staff members and stake-holders in future. “Mental wellness helpdesk & tele-consultation is in contemplation for future in the Supreme Court,” said an official.



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