This Paris-based desi girl found her calling through the contemporary medium of podcasts post marriage. “Popkast with Garima is a product of the pandemic.
The idea was conceived a year back but I kept procrastinating until I moved to Marseille only four days before the lockdown began here.
It was difficult initially moving to a new city but I always wanted to host my own show,” says the charming lady with a friendly voice that instantly puts her interviewees at ease, even as Garima skilfully navigates conversations that revolve around intimate sexual issues.
“I have always believed in igniting the right conversations and Popkast gives me an opportunity to have conversations that really matter with our pop culture icons. Living here has made me more independent and I’ve truly embraced myself. I no longer care about body hair, stretch marks, basic things that I was once red-faced of. I’ve definitely shed the inhibition of ‘log kya kahenge’ (What will people think!),” she says.
And which is why Garima opted to talk about the taboo with her Popkast No Sugar All Spice (Season 2).
“All episodes were inspired from our day-to-day lives of living through these societal constructs From beauty standards to ‘mard ko dard nahi hota’ and dissecting the fault in our Rahus to dealing with hate comments. I loved recording with performer Sushant Divgikar AKA Rani KoHEnoor for my episode called Paap Ko Jalakar Rakh Dunga. I think he is a wonderful person with sass and intelligence,” she confesses.
Growing her world
Garima has always danced to her own tune and calls herself “a rebellious kid.” As a youngster growing in a conservative Mar-wari family, questioning the status quo came naturally to her.
“I am a firm believer of bringing change from your own home first. So, I have been comfortable about sex, exploration and conversations with my siblings and friends. My prime mission with my Popkast is to be unapologetic, unabashed in my choice of topic, guest and conversations with them.”
In a Popkast quirkily called Auzaar E Lockdown she gets into a fun chat with Raj Armani (Co-founder of Besharam) and actors Leeza Mangaldas and Kajol Tyagi on sex toys, female gratification and with gentle ease manages to normalise the conversation.
“We created a category called Sex and Wellness where actress Leeza Mangaldas spoke about female pleasure, so essentially with Popkast the idea is to break all glass ceilings,” she adds.
Her self-confidence is admirable. Garima refers to herself as “miss-know-it-all and expert of nothing” in her badass show.
“My parents have been very supportive during this journey of self-discovery. I have moved four cities in the last seven years, met a plethora of new people across different cultures and continents and I’d attribute it to that. It just gave me so much new perspective and I broke so many stereotypes for myself,” she reveals.
All her Popkasts have been designed with the prime intent of making Indians ‘haatmeinnirbhar’ which Garima defines as a ‘simple yet powerful hashtag’.
“This was a quirky word play to normalise the idea of self-gratification. India is the land of Kamasutra and our culture is synonymous to the rich history with sex.
Even though we are a population of 1.3 billion, we still face ‘Haye ram’ when we discuss intimate words is why #hathmeinnirbhar became an important buzzword,” she adds.
It would not be wrong to conclude that podcasts are working towards making sexual conversations a drawing room affair. “Sex is not new to podcasts. But the new wave of podcasters have managed to convey taboo topics around sex in an evolved manner,” she sums up.