Photojournalist Jit Chattopadhyay is the Edge of Humanity Magazine contributor of this documentary photography. From the ongoing project ‘Water contamination at slum areas’. To see Jit’s body of work, click on any image.
Being a photojournalist, I use to travel around our city Kolkata. During my work I got an information about an urban slum near Salt lake where several people died last year because of Dengue. I visited there to inquire the exact reason. I interacted with a family whose 10 years old boy named Akash Chowdhury died of Dengue. After interacting with these people I was shocked to discover that they were not aware about any of the reasons that were affecting their livelihood and their poor living conditions. So I started investigating and photographing the affected areas to showcase the exact causes.
I was astonished to see that all the water they are depending on is contaminated. During monsoons water gets logged and remains stagnant all around the area. The water of uncovered reserves and wells gets contaminated by the overflowing water during monsoon. Even the tap water zone is highly contaminated. The families of the slum use this contaminated water daily for all the household purposes. They wash their clothes, utensils, even bathe using this water. Even their main source of drinking water is this. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in the stagnant water eventually resulting in Dengue. There is no proper drainage system. Hence the contaminated water flows to adjoining ponds. Solid waste is also disposed in the ponds. The people living in the high rise buildings beside these slums also dumps off their solid waste in these areas. The living condition in this places is getting worse day by day as this is leading to more water related diseases.
Contaminated water is causing diseases like Diarrhoea, Cholera, Typhoid etc. According to the statistics created by WHO Some 829,000 people are estimated to die each year from Diarrhoea. Each year between 50 to 528 million people are infected by Dengue and approximately 10 to 20 thousand people die. In India the cases and deaths are increasing every year.
All images and text © Jit Chattopadhyay
Destruction of coastal West Bengal due to frequent cyclones caused by global warming
By Jit Chattopadhyay
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