Dhaka between hope and struggle
For many, Dhaka is known as the clothes manufacturing capital for multinational fashion outlets. Others will know its unfortunate reputation as being continually bottom of the Economist’s ‘liveability ranking’. Few know little more. This lack of international coverage coupled with the recent Rana Plaza disaster motivated me to investigate the truth about the conditions and poverty of Dhaka in the first part of my project.
The scale of the poverty depicted in the press is not exaggerated. As my photos show, life is not to be taken for granted; citizens of Dhaka live in a cauldron devoid of hygiene, security or stability. They live with no real health service, skipping between the horror of traffic deaths in search of employment and food. In one of the world’s most populated cities there is scarcely room to gasp. Nevertheless, there is a hope and determination bursting from Dhaka’s inhabitants which has gone unnoticed in most media reports. Despite living in such inhumane conditions, it is quite clear that the indefatigable desire to progress and overcome these hardships is what drives these people most. In my pictures, I tried to show that these people are not resigned to misery.
Their hope is certainly working towards progress. In the last twenty years, the rate of poverty has decreased from 57% to 31% and incredibly Bangladesh has achieved most of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) set by the United Nations in the face of the 2015 deadline. While these statistics are impressive, they neglect to show the truth that problems such as climate change are seriously impeding this remarkable progress.