A dyed lock of hair twisted around a gigantic nose ring symbolises married women in this tiny settlement in the interiors of Kutch, Gujarat.

PHOTO • Shayoni Mehta

Located in the scorching, sandy banni area, the settlement is isolated from other habitations. It has only a seasonal well, no carpenter, ironsmith or industry.

PHOTO • Shayoni Mehta

Theirs is a very different existence from that of the urban poor, who see progress but are not a part of it.


Shayoni Mehta

Shayoni Mehta is a photographer and freelance writer. She is working on her master’s thesis in the area of development aid policy at the University of Strasbourg, France.

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