Philip Blenkinsop | India | The Fires Within: The burning coalfields of Jharia, India

Posted by admin | Consequences by NOOR Project, Philip Blenkinsop | Tuesday 10 November 2009 4:38 pm

Philip Blenkinsop | India | The Fires Within

©2009 Philip Blenkinsop/NOOR

THE FIRES WITHIN: The burning coalfields of Jharia, India

Under Jharia’s crust, lies one of the largest coal deposits in India. But for the people who live above an inferno, Jharia is a condemned place. For almost a century, fires have burned uncontrolled in the mines beneath Jharia, polluting the air with poisonous fumes and splitting the ground with dangerous fissures. For the impoverished residents of Jharia, stealing coal to sell and picking through collapsed buildings for salvageable material is a dangerous way of life. And now, with the earth literally collapsing beneath their feet, they face an ecological disaster.

About Philip Blenkinsop:

Philip BlenkinsopBlenkinsop has been described as ‘A man of guerrillas and of resistances,’ (Herve Le Goff) and ‘One of the most essential photographers of his generation.’ (Christian Caujolle)

Since arriving in Asia in 1989, Blenkinsop’s name has become synonymous with forgotten conflicts.

Blenkinsop is adamant that the photographer should never censor scenes through the camera. “Photographers are both witnesses and messengers. Our responsibility must always lie with the people we focus on, and with the accurate depiction of their plight, regardless of how unpalatable this might be for magazine readers.”

His work, published in international arenas, has been the catalyst for much discussion and amongst other accolades was awarded Amnesty International’s Photojournalism prize for excellence in human rights journalism.

The author of two books, The Cars That Ate Bangkok (White Lotus), and Extreme Asie (Photopoche Societe), Blenkinsop continues to live in Asia and has been focusing on the environment for the last two years.

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