The ‘Mardon Wali Baat’ programme works on college campuses and urban community settings in the Lucknow district of Uttar Pradesh to create youth-led dialogues and actions to question patriarchal notions, norms of masculinity, and gender based violence.

Mardon Wali Baat was launched in 2016 with the goal of working on these issues specifically with young men and boys in the context of Lucknow, where violence rooted in asserting the hegemonic position of men is normalised and treated as an every-day phenomenon. In 2018, the project carried out research across Uttar Pradesh through personal interviews, life histories, and focused group discussions with college-going young men and SRHR outcomes. The research focused on understanding and highlighting their perspectives and experiences around masculinities and its performance, and its impact on their sexual and reproductive health.


With the hope of informing SRHR programming for men, both organisationally and within the sector, this exploratory research project asks how masculinities are constituted and expressed by young college-going men in urban Uttar Pradesh. Conducted across three locations with 80 young men (18-26 years old), this qualitative research explores the intersections between gender, sexuality, caste, class and religion in discussions on masculinities, with a specific focus on sexual health, contraception, and violence. Mardon Wali Baatein further explores the impact of social media and technology on masculinity. The broader insights from the research can further inform programmes that seek to engage men and masculinities across a variety of issues. The report and executive summary is available for download in English below.

Our Impact

  1. Funded by American Jewish World Service, over 2018-19, qualitative research was carried out with over 80 college-going men across 3 urban sites in Uttar Pradesh to understand young men’s experiences of masculinity and gender, and it’s impact on SRHR outcomes. Read the Executive Summary of the report here.
  2. In 2016-17, The programme has directly reached out to around 2000 young people and adolescents on-ground, and an audience of around 10,000 people online.
  3. In 2016, 13 young men were trained over 7 days in Lucknow by TYPF, with support from The Asia Foundation. The participants were equipped with knowledge on power and patriarchy, gender and inequality, and sexual harassment.
  4. Through social action projects, the participants reached out to more than 500 young people in educational institutions to generate awareness on gender-based violence, women’s safety, human rights, and issues of masculinity.
  5. Digital media products such as posters and a podcast were developed in collaboration with Agents of Ishq. These were used during the campaigns and were also made available to the public.