aligrah

Keys to Aligarh

On a misty wintry Januray evening of 2008, I ventured out of Aligarh Muslim University to see the famous lock and key makers of the country in a drowsy jeep, which took us through the alley ways of the suburbs, vehemently horning through burqa clad crowd shopping through the local festival. I walked through the slushy lanes…

ginger house

The ginger warehouse

At the heart of spice trade in Cochin, there runs an exclusive Ginger export house run by the Gujarathi merchants. A historical piece of building that reminds us of a prosperous era in trade! Local women workers clean, strain and dry ginger at the warehouse for a daily wage of 60 to 75 rupees –…

sivaraman

What the rain did to us!

Kuttanad, rice bowl of Kerala has the distinction of being one of the few places in world where farming is carried out below sea level. Summer rain wretched the full grown paddy fields causing  germinated rice seeds, even before it could be harvested. Some farmers shared their grief, while others angered!

kerala cig

Beedi workers

At one of the Dinesh ‘beedi’ (Indian tobacco) co-operatives in northern Kerala. The brand ‘Dinesh beedi’ is probably one of the popular brands in the Indian beedi market! There lies the wrapper leaves which are then rolled and a pinch of tobacco is pushed at the end to finish the beedi making. Women get paid Rs 60/- per…