2011 Photo Contest, Daily Life, Singles, 3rd prize
Photographer

Andrew Biraj

16 November, 2010

An overcrowded train approaches a railway station in Dhaka, Bangladesh, as more passengers wait to board.

About

Andrew Biraj

Andrew Biraj was born in 1982 in Bangladesh. He holds an advanced diploma in photography from Pathshala, the South Asian Institute Media Academy and a BA in photography from the ...

Background story

Dhaka, Bangladesh

An overcrowded train approaches a railway station in Dhaka, Bangladesh, as more passengers wait to board. Millions of residents of Dhaka were traveling to their home villages to celebrate the Eid al-Adha holiday. Dhaka is fast becoming one of the largest cities in the world. Its present population of 13 million is expected to rise to between 22 and 25 million by 2020. The rapid population growth has put severe pressure on transport infrastructure.

Photo credit:
Reuters

Andrew Biraj speaks about the project:
“Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, is the home of nearly 12 million people and everyday the number is getting higher. Hundreds of people rush to Dhaka daily to find a way of living, as they have no work in villages. The rising sea level makes many climate refugees in this low-lying country of more than 150 million people. Also many people are losing their homes due to river erosions. Two devastating cyclones over the last three years also left many homeless.
 
Most of the jobless and homeless people take shelter at the slums in Dhaka. Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, is an occasion when they prefer to go to the places they belong. During the time, they leave the capital en masse. The train is their only option as most of them cannot afford any better transport. I wanted to show how they make their way to home. There was not even space on the rooftop of the trains, but it did not surprise anyone. People even travel sitting between carriages. They take a high risk to travel to their homes as they have no other choice.”

Technical information

Shutter Speed
1/4000 s
Focal length
135 mm
F-Stop
f/2
ISO
200
Camera
Canon EOS 5D Mark II

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