A Delhi-based photographer, Lokesh Dang exhibited the first of its kind photo project at the Indian Habitat Centre in New Delhi to make people aware on the growing racial discrimination towards the Northeastern people in Delhi and the NCR region.
According to Lokesh, the photographs are showing all the activities which people are going through in the city. He wanted the title and captions to be provocative. He thinks ‘Chinki’ is the word Northeastern people have been hearing from the past so many years. So, he wanted to put it across to the ‘Mainlanders’. This was a very important message which he wanted to convey from the project, he said.
Welcoming the move, some of the visitors said more of such projects should be displayed for an inclusive interaction. Another visitor Nazia said that it the kind of pictures that have been put up by the artist has something that tells revealing stories that has been undocumented.
Behind the idea of this three year project of Lokesh was a personal reason. He informed that when he was walking around in the city with one of his friends who has mongoloid features, and is a half-Naga and half-Punjabi; some boys started commenting on his friend with some provocative names. And that’s how he came up with the idea of spreading awareness and bringing change.
During the photo exhibition, Lokesh also shared the platform along with one of the acclaimed photo journalists from Thomson Reuters on child marriage, which is one of the most critical issues in today’s context in the country.