Thursday, September 23, 2010

The picture you should know of...

Kevin Carter, Sudan, Pulitzer prize
Kevin Carter was a South African photo journalist. He was a free-lancer mainly. Around 1990 he was in Sudan and was passing by a village near a UN mission camp.

Suddenly his eyes stuck up on a scenario and he snapped some shots of it. There was this little girl toddling down to UN mission camp and was too tired to move and was taking rest on the ground. Near to her this vulture was sitting down and waiting for a possible feast - you know what it might be.

He sold this picture to a newspaper (American probably) and thousands of mails were piling up in the office asking whereabouts of the little girl. Kevin said he could not help her but the camp was not far and girl was sufficiently strong enough to be able to reach there. But he was severely criticized for being involved with photo shot only and not helping the girl to find her way out.

He said, he waited there for 20 minutes so that the vulture can spread its wings and thereby add more drama to the shot. If you visualize, you will feel how pathetic that might be.

As an accolade to this once-in-a-millionth shot, Kevin was awarded Pulitzer prize which is the most coveted prize in journalism. But 3 or 4 months later of the award, he committed suicide. May be seeing the scenario through own eyes was far heavier than seeing it through a picture.

He was also the witness and photographer of 'necklacing' - which is a horrible and lethal killing of a person by tying a tyre full of petrol around the arms of a person and burning him/her alive. 'Necklacing' is a crude fun by the practitioners to mean they are adorning the guilty(?) person with a petrol-tyre necklace. It was a practice in South Africa by some political activists and about 400 people were victims to this. If you google with the word 'necklacing' you will find horrific pictures that might haunt you down in your nightmares.

The world is full of poverty, but human heart is full of love. Yet I don't know why we waste so much money on luxaries - people are making golden cars and golden planes. This little girl did not know why she had come to the world. She never finds out the world could be such a wonderful place, but only knows she has to struggle, otherwise she is a prey of a vulture. Sometimes I feel like human being himself is the vulture waiting for anihilation of its own species. Just you can visualize a warlord in place of the vulture practising war on the weak, waiting for anihilation or a feast on them.

This little girl could be your or my child. Let's spread our wings of love to every such vulnerable beings in whatever manner we can. The most vulnerable among human being are the kids and the old persons. The kids are our future and the old made our futures. So let's be by their side whenever they need us. And let them know the world is a sweet place to live in and there is no bitterness at all...

Let's sing with M. Jackson, "Heal the world, make it a better place"... But let's make it real. Once Paul Simon and Garfunkel sang, "People talking without speaking, people hearing without listening" - let's not only hear the song but listen to it. We are only once on earth and will not come back again, why shouldn't we be happy with everybody and start right from the moment...

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