In a country where well over half the population lives on less than two dollars a day, it takes a lot to shock people. The sight of desperate families traveling in search of money and food, whole communities defecating in the open, old women performing back-breaking labour, all this is simply part of life in India, home to 1.2 billion people.
The death of a 10-day-old girl last November in the Attappadi tribal belt of Kerala, one of India’s best performing states in terms of human development indices, shows how the country’s battle against child mortality is far from won.
Balakrishnan, a labourer from Kochi in the southern Indian state of Kerala, was suffering from oral cancer. He was admitted to the Regional Cancer Centre (RCC) in Thiruvananthapuram. After the first course of radiation therapy, the 60-year-old could not eat or drink because of severe pain and infection in the mouth.
Ashik Rehman, 47, worked as a labourer in the southern Indian state of Kerala. He left for Saudi Arabia two years ago, hoping to earn enough to buy a house in his native place. Now he is back and staring at a bleak future.
When Sarath, 29, a security staffer with a private firm in Kattakada town in India’s southern Kerala state hanged himself at his office premises, his death became a grim reminder of what statistics in the country have been showing for some time now: more and more young Indian men are succumbing to socio-economic pressures and are committing suicide.
Raju Das from the north-eastern Indian state Assam migrated to the southern Indian state Kerala two years ago to join the construction boom. Kerala has emerged as the new magnet drawing workers from around India.
The Tirunelveli district in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu may seem idyllic, dotted with lush green fields, but upon closer inspection one sees signs of a battle that does not appear to be abating.
The disease itself may not discriminate on the basis of gender, but when it comes to healthcare for patients with diabetes, women in India find themselves at a disadvantage compared to men.
Shaken by the brutal gang rape and murder of a young woman in the national capital New Delhi last December, the female workforce in India is calling for more concrete measures for the protection of female employees from both physical and non-physical attacks.
An indefinite struggle continues against the Kudankulam nuclear power plant in the southern Indian state Tamil Nadu despite a government crackdown on protests.
Mahalakshmi, a housewife married to a farmer, is afraid for her family’s future. The fifty-two-year-old woman is also frustrated that Indian authorities have "betrayed" poor villagers.
Twenty-year-old Reshma, hailing from the village of Aryanad in the Thiruvananthapuram district of the South Indian state of Kerala, was forced to drop out of school early as a result of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
Sreelakshmi, an office executive in a major diagnostic laboratory in Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of the southern Indian state of Kerala, ends her 11-hour working day to return home at night to a mountain of domestic chores.
At midnight on Oct. 12, 91-year-old George Puthenveettil, a widower living in Kalanjur village in the Pathanamthita district of the southern Indian state of Kerala, was brutally tortured and ousted from his own house by his only son for “not earning any money”.
As gender-based violence across India becomes more frequent, and more savage, increasing numbers of women are speaking out against the cruelty.