Subhrajit Sen

2020 Commended

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Death Valley

Before being turned into a Uranium mining zone in 1965, Jadugoda, in Jharkhand State, was a lush green forested area inhabited by tribes. In its lust for resources to generate Nuclear energy and weapons, the Indian Government sacrificed both the forest and its inhabitants. The displaced people shifted into the periphery of a 160 km uranium mine, and remained very much within a dangerous radiation zone. From then on, the rates of miscarriages, cancer, tuberculosis, and many forms of genetic disorders among these people went on increasing to a hopeless rate. For water, these people used to depend on the Subarnarekha River – the mine’s toxic waste not only contaminated this river but it also ruined its aqua life. My work narrates how these people have been displaced and devastated by the Indian Government’s hunt for radioactive ores. This is a story to point out how power centers can operate with minimum concern for nature and for those who live in nature.

About the Photographer

Subhrajit Sen (b.1993) is a Kolkata based documentary photographer and graphic designer. His work predominantly concentrates on the socio-political issues that are jeopardizing livelihood whilst being ignored by mainstream media. After completing graduation, he enrolled at Ramakrishna Mission Vidyamandira, Kolkata, and ‘Counter Foto – a center for visual arts’, Dhaka in 2016 to learn documentary photography. With an urge to thwart the inevitable effects of Uranium Mining, he started his photography career through a project named ‘Death Valley’. It has been awarded Social Documentary Photography Grant 2018 by ‘Sri Aurobindo Center for Arts and Communications & Murthy Nayak Foundation’, New Delhi, and secured second-place on Documentary Photography Award by ‘International Academic Forum’, Japan in 2018.