Project and personal research — Finalist
Emiliano Pinnizzotto/ Italy (Italia)
Opium (The Opium Border)
Support this photographer - share this work on Facebook.
Nagaland, (Border between India and Myanmar) The scourge of opium in the border villages between India and Burma where in this remote area forgotten by both governments, without any checks and prevention by the authorities, the consumption of opium has spread so rapidly as to make one-third of men slave of opium, creating a hard vacuum in the fabric of the society. The villages of this region, are very difficult to achieve, there are no paved roads, and it takes many hours just to move a few kilometers This area seems to have been completely forgotten about by both nations. While women go to the fields to work, barefoot, in all weather conditions, men gather in a hut to smoke opium all day long. They gathered around a fire, scrupulously perform everything as a ritual: starting with the boiling of the substance, then mixing of the liquid with a craft tobacco, obtained from the drying of the leaves of a plant present in the surrounding forests. Then, with the pipes of wood, carved by them, they smoke in large quantities from the first light of day. This drug called "Kani" has completely immobilized the entire economy of these villages, multiplying poverty. Women are forced to stay out all day without any rest, away from home, from the kids. They wake up at dawn to work in the fields, especially in the cultivation of tea leaves, working hard, barefoot, in all weather conditions, every day. The children are left in the same house used as an opium den, under the control of elder sisters or some grandmothers who are no longer able to go to the fields. Children play while adults are smoking, the acrid smell of opium and its fumes spread all over the house, especially into the rooms with no door where the kids stay. The situation is now already dramatic and critical. But what will happen In a few years? Without any intervention, entire villages will be inhabited by men and boys who are completely addicted to opiumBack to gallery