Meet the DJ Who Dropped the Deck to Be on the COVID-19 Frontline

RollingStone India|June 2020

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Meet the DJ Who Dropped the Deck to Be on the COVID-19 Frontline
Mumbai artist The Spindoctor has been working tirelessly helping those affected ever since the pandemic broke out
DAVID BRITTO

FOR SANJAY MERIYA, his stage name The Spindoctor was meticulously picked by him when he began DJing at the start of the last decade. For the uninitiated, Meriya is a certified doctor who completed his Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery in 2013 from Mumbai’s B.Y.L. Nair Hospital. “I was a nerd since childhood. I wanted to become an engineer, I wanted to go to NASA,” says Meriya. However, it was his parents who persuaded him to take up medicine instead “to help humanity.”

Before The Spindoctor became a full-time DJ in 2017 and began dropping beats as part of Mumbai rapper Divine’s Gully Gang crew, he was out working in a village near Pune practicing medicine. Helping humanity is certainly what the DJ has been up to over the last few weeks as he has taken a step back from music to return to the field as a doctor and serve the common man amid the COVID-19 pandemic. “I thought that if it is needed, I will definitely go and work as a doctor,” he says.

In this interview with Rolling Stone India, The Spindoctor talks to us about what it is like being on the frontline during COVID-19, the difficulties of the job, his advice for people and more. Excerpts:

How did you get involved in going back as a doctor to help out with the task of those affected by the coronavirus pandemic?

First, I got an email from the health ministry saying that doctors are needed and fill up your details. And then as and when we require, we’ll give you a call. And I signed up for that, but they didn’t give me a call. And the other day I was going through a newspaper and I saw this ad from the BMC [Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation], saying that the BMC needs doctors to work as frontline health workers and so and so posts are there for doctors, for nurses. The next day I went for an interview and I got the job.

Which part of Mumbai have you been posted at and what have your main duties on the job been?

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June 2020