Reporting on human rights & everything in between: India, El Salvador, Indonesia, Bosnia-Herzegovina. Walked 1,200kms across India on Out Of Eden Walk with Paul Salopek. IWMF Elizabeth Neuffer Fellow.
Women across Indian cities and towns have always had a date with the nearest beauty parlor (salon), which offered a comfortable, home-like space, to wax their body hair, get a facial, a hair trim, and manicures and pedicures. But now women and girls in India are wearing makeup every day, flaunting their eyeshadow blends and contoured faces outside the burkha and on the streets. As manufacturers eye the potential for increased cash flow, the color cosmetics industry — comprised of both Indian and international brands — has soared.
“Have dinner at home. I’ll fetch you at 10pm.”
The anonymity at the club was where my body came alive and my mind calmed. All through 2018, I caught up on what I'd missed when I was 18. At 33, dancing with R on Friday nights did to me much more than what it could've done to me at 18.
Urban infrastructure, especially in a densely populated city like Mumbai where commercial interests overpower every fundamental right, becomes the castle in the air built by political parties before elections.
[This deep dive was translated in Mandarin and first published in Initium Media]
"On one side of Nellie’s street are houses soaked with loss and injustice; on the other side are houses cemented with chauvinism. This template of roaming ghosts in India’s forgotten corner is now being replicated across the country."
Almost every bank in India – nationalised and private – has significant floor space in Patel, one of Mumbai's recently gentrified business district. But Ganesh Dattatrey Shinde, who sweeps the streets outside Elphinstone station that leads to the towers of commerce, has never been able to access any loans that these banks offer.
How does one draw in audiences for a movie that takes inspiration from real life events, but aims at being instructional from the margins? Kenny Basumatary has relied on what he has developed as a niche genre: mixed martial arts and cheeky comedy, in Assamese.
In the country with the world’s highest youth unemployment, the number of registered tour guides in the capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina has nearly doubled in three years.
Out of a population of 3.5 million, more than 86,000 Bosnians have acquired a different nationality since 1996. The process has been rapid in recent years: between 2012 and mid 2018, 25,003 people renounced their citizenship. And parents encourage their children to look for opportunities abroad.
Alen Marijanović’s cynicism is the air that the Bosnian youth breathe.
“We are Assamese, and are Rabha. It’s a wrong question to ask which I identify with first." Battles over identity — of caste, religion, ethnicity, statehood and nationalism — are bubbling up in different parts of India, as it prepares to vote for its next government. But in Assam, those multiple tussles are all converging this election season, turning the state of 31 million people into a unique laboratory that could demonstrate just how much identity politics will determine how Indians across the country vote in 2019.
The rape survivor and five nuns who have been supporting her are facing threats from their own congregation, the Missionaries of Jesus, of being transferred. They have been asked to join different convents across the country in a move to weaken their case against Bishop Mulakkal, who is accused of having raped the nun repeatedly.
A new bill puts India’s transgender population under the threat of severe discrimination, five years after India's Supreme Court of India allowed them to officially identify themselves as a third gender.
With the frontlines blurring as to what a war zone really is, and how the public views journalists in general, the mental health of journalists is at risk: they’re not getting the help they need, and neither are they able to ask for it.
Abdul Alim believes if he had stayed, the job would have killed him. Two cousins, Omor and Shirapat Ali, are among the 15 miners who have been trapped for three weeks. Abdul, who fears they may be dead by now, stutters every time he speaks about them. Flooding blocked their exit from the rat-hole mine - named for the narrow crevices through which coal is extracted. Efforts to rescue them have made little headway - a fact that does not surprise Abdul.
The only tangible mementoes that Shefali Begum, 18, and Nafisa Begum*, 16, have of their husbands are the 'salwar kameez' the two brothers had brought for them shortly before heading off to work in an illegal coal mine in northeastern India. Now, the two girls fear they may never see their husbands again.