Changing Lives, One Child at a Time: A Mission to End Child Labor.

Dear friends,

I am happy to share that all 30 of my students have been promoted to their new classes and have received their new books. With excitement and happiness, they all shone like stars. It brings me great pleasure to share these radiant faces with you.

As you know, in 2020, I took on the responsibility of ensuring their complete education for my entire lives. For this reason, I regularly visit their homes and families to assess their situations. The years seem to be passing for them in the blink of an eye!

I began with 10 children, and now I have more than 30. Hopefully, in the coming years, I will be able to admit and shift more child laborers from their workplace to school.

For more than 15 years, I have been working on the issue of child labor in Bangladesh. From the beginning of my photography career, I wanted to change the situation and raise awareness of this issue. However, I was not happy with the slow progress happening in our society. Therefore, I decided to change people’s lives directly and started with those people whom I had photographed and those with whom I was already working.

I started by providing training and helping to set up businesses for people in need, especially the parents of child laborers. With these businesses, the families could earn more money and send their children to school instead of factories.

To get working children to school, I had to go door to door many times and request that their parents send them to school. Eventually, I was able to convince some parents about the importance of education and motivated them to send their children to school. It was not easy, as I had to take full financial responsibility for these kids, including expenses such as admission fees, tuition fees, daily food, books, clothes, and financially compensating their parents for the entire amount of money they would have earned each month if they had worked instead of going to school. I will also have to bear all the children’s expenses to ensure that they will continue to attend school.

Like these 30 children, more than four million children are struggling in our country. It may be difficult, but it is not impossible to give hope to these 4 million children. If every capable person would lend a hand to one child, miracles would happen, which could transform our society into a better-educated population who could better contribute to the development of our country, a benefit for us all.

My heartfelt thanks and deep gratitude for your kind support for the work I do. Without your support and love, I could not make all of this happen.

Sending my respect and prayers.

Love and light!

GMB Akash

Ralph Striewski came from Germany to join me in my exclusive six days One on One photography workshop.

Ralph Striewski came from Germany to Bangladesh in order to join me in my exclusive six days One on One photography workshop. January, 2023

To check the other participants work visits my workshop website:

If you are interested to join this exclusive program send an email to know detail at:

About the workshop: The focus of this customized program is to teach photography going beyond boundaries. Each student will have exclusive access to me through the duration of the workshop, giving them the opportunity to take advantage of my work experience, teachings, and methodologies. Due to the intimate nature of these workshops and the real world working environment, each student can expect to learn and experience much more than they would during one year in a standard university photography program. Each workshop is six days long and set in locations that are rich in culture with a wealth of photographic and documentary subject matter.

Bangladesh’s Unsung Heroes: Celebrating the Backbone of Our Nation on Labor Day

Behind the growth of any nation lies the hard work of its workmen. Saluting our indefatigable workers, who keep Bangladesh moving forward as we celebrate #LabourDay#MayDay.

It is essential to recognize the contribution of Bangladeshi laborers who work tirelessly in various industries, including agriculture, manufacturing, construction, and service sectors.

Unfortunately, many of these workers face challenges like low wages, unsafe working conditions, and lack of job security. On this day, we must take a moment to reflect on these issues and pledge to work towards improving the lives of our workers. Let us honor the achievements of our working-class people and commit ourselves to creating a better future for them.

This photo album serves as a tribute to the hardworking men and women who contribute immensely to our society. Your comments, filled with appreciation and support, only reinforce the significance of this celebration.

Each photo represents the resilience, dedication, and unwavering spirit of our labor force. It is an honor to capture and share these moments with all of you.

Let’s take a moment to reflect on the achievements and sacrifices of our labor community. Feel free to share your thoughts, personal experiences, or messages of gratitude.

Together, we can amplify their voices and recognize their invaluable contributions.

May this album serve as a reminder of the strength and unity that define us as a nation. Happy Labour Day to all, and thank you for being a part of this meaningful journey!

_GMB Akash

’20 new toilet this month for 20 families’

’20 new toilet this month for 20 families’

It is easy to take a restroom or toilet for granted. But everyone is not fortunate enough to build one. The best thing about a toilet is that it helps people have dignity, better health, safety and so much more.

Dear friends, By the grace of God, this month we have already built 20 new toilets for 20 families.

I am building Restroom/Toilets’ for the old unfortunate elderly couples, fathers and widowed mothers (with young daughters) and disabled people, the old couples who are neglected by their children and who do not have the ability to make one for themselves and because of this basic need they are suffering in various ways.

“A old mother, Khadija Khatun, (70) said, Unfortunately, I do not have my own toilet, I have to use my neighbor’s toilet. Every day, I have to endure various insults just to use the toilet. It’s a difficult situation for me, but I have no choice.

If I were to go outside in the field, it would be even more challenging for me to stay clean. This makes it difficult for me to fulfill my daily prayers.”

“After getting the new toilet, now I can stay clean and can fulfill my daily prayer.”

To give them a dignified and healthy life, I have started building washrooms/toilets for such helpless families and from now on, I will continue to build hygienic toilets in different remote villages for unprivileged people who are in need, every month.

I feel truly blessed to have you all by my side. May God continue to bless you abundantly.

Love and Light

_GMB Akash

Debby Mosseveld came from the Netherlands to join me in my exclusive six days One on One photography workshop.

Debby Mosseveld came from the Netherlands to Bangladesh in order to join me in my exclusive six days One on One photography workshop. November 2022

To check the other participants work visits my workshop website:

If you are interested to join this exclusive program send an email to know detail at

About the workshop: The focus of this customized program is to teach photography going beyond boundaries. Each student will have exclusive access to me through the duration of the workshop, giving them the opportunity to take advantage of my work experience, teachings, and methodologies. Due to the intimate nature of these workshops and the real world working environment, each student can expect to learn and experience much more than they would during one year in a standard university photography program. Each workshop is six days long and set in locations that are rich in culture with a wealth of photographic and documentary subject matter.

A deep water pump for 12 families.

“The best charity is to provide Water.”

My friends, by the grace of God, I have been able to provide a deep-water pump for another 12 helpless and needy families again. Those who could not afford to install a deep tubewell and for which they were living a life of misery and were suffering in various ways due to lack of clean drinking water throughout the year.

Due to its proximity to Dhaka City, it is almost impossible for them to draw water from a normal hand pressure tap in this area. Water can only be extracted by deep tube-wells in this region.

But all in all, it costs around 70,000 takas to install a deep water pump which is an amount that the families are unable to afford…

They always had to collect water from a nearby pond for drinking, cooking, cleaning or washing what is not healthy at all. And if they wanted to collect clean water, they had to fetch water from a far away.

Through a week of hard work, time and effort I was able to install this Deep Water Pump.

My friends, these 12 families sent prayers, gratitude and best wishes towards you all. They said, this tubewell was the biggest gift of their life and most of the miseries of their life will be removed by this water pump tap…

Thank you so much and sending my love and gratitude to you, who are constantly supporting my work and journey.

Love and Light

_GMB Akash

Dark Alleys

“These disorders — schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, depression, addiction — they not only steal our time to live, they change who we are. In the time period of working with drug addict, I encounter tremendous shiver in thought of helplessness that how they are silently dying in these dark alleys and there is no dark Knight to hold them straight only we are here to celebrate the funeral of these fallen stars”_GMB Akash

Drug addiction is a major social evil in Bangladesh, affecting thousands of young people and their families. There are thousands of addicted people in Bangladesh and most of them are young, between the ages of 18 and 30 from all walks of life. Drug addiction in young Bangladeshis is mainly seen because of reasons like depression. People try to remove depression using drugs as a tool. And this is how they become addicts.

Drug users are taking drugs by sharing same needle with each other. Injecting drug users have few places to turn, and they are one of the groups most at risk of contracting and spreading HIV. Heroin is mostly smoked within aluminum foil or cigarette paper, but in Bangladesh this is injected. Injections through infected needles can cause diseases of the liver, brain, heart, lungs and spinal cord. Estimates of the number of people living with HIV/AIDS in Bangladesh range from 2,500 to 15,000 most of them are affected while taking drugs. A Heroin addict may need about Taka 500 worth of the drug a day. They neglect the needs of the family, and those are non-earning may sell off family assets. They also go out on the streets for mugging and dacoit.

“Rickshaw driver Mohammad Bashir has been addicted to heroin for most of the last 13 years. His habit cost him his job and put an enormous strain on his family. Like most addicts, he often uses shared needles. Police has caught him in the spot, members of his addict team has managed to fly. But police caught him, while he is continually requesting police to leave him in the word of his promise that he will not inject him any more with drugs”

Drug addiction is increasing among the street children who live without a family, love and care. Bangladeshi youth are ‘huffing’ shoe glue, a drug locally called ‘Dandi’, which is seriously harmful to mental and physical health. Up to 17 percent of street children in capital Dhaka are addicted to drugs. Children as young as 10 years old are also experimenting with alcohol, phensidyl, Heroin, Baba, Ganja, pethedrine, and other forms of available drugs. For managing the money for drags these children spends all their earnings on drugs. Some time they beg whole day in the street and end of the day spends everything on drugs.

“Bitter experiences are there too. I visit all danger territory where these addicted people living senselessly. Few of them try to beat me sometime, few of them tied me with their arms and cried and cried, few of them burst out in depression and few of them wants to end their sufferings. But this is cycle of unbearable torment which has no end. In a world with chaos and hunger, everything becomes a guerrilla struggle. It becomes almost impossible to save lives or grow dreams sometime. But yet these lives deserve our affection, attention and sympathy. No medicine is as effective as love to them. “– GMB Akash

GMB Akash

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka



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Philipp Gasser, came again for the 2nd time from Switzerland to participate Photography Workshop.

‘It’s a wonderful opportunity for me to join this One on One workshop, because Akash is a wonderful person and a great artist. He knows how to take incredible pictures and I could imagine no one else than him as my Mentor. For me, it’s a great chance to improve my personal skill for photography. Akash took me to some exciting places which are rich in photographing subjects. We visited unique places, unique people, and unique situations.

Every day we start at early morning and continue till late evening. Akash checked every single image I took during the shoot, rated them and gave me valuable inputs. Akash is a great teacher. Bangladesh is different and its people are amazing, it’s a huge experience for me. I took one thousand pictures every day. And every day I improved. I see the improvement in all my pictures.

This workshop is time worthy, experience worthy; it’s an unforgettable experience for me to join Akash on this daily adventure through the villages, through the different places. In six days, I took more than ten thousand images. I will leave this country with a big smile’

_Philipp Gasser, came again for the 2nd time in 2022 from Switzerland to participate in ‘One on One Photography Workshop with GMB Akash’

To apply in this Exclusive One on One workshop send an email to

GMB Akash

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka



Photography Workshop:

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Old Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Puran Dhaka, more commonly referred to as Old Dhaka, is the original part of the bustling Dhaka Metropolitan City which serves as the capital of Bangladesh. Old Dhaka dates back to the 7th century, when the area was under the control of the Buddhist kingdom of Kamarupa which ruled for almost 800 years between 350 and 1140 CE. Age-old traditions and a sense of community among the residents of Puran Dhaka have remained particularly strong as the rest of the city continues to modernize. Many agree that the customs of the residents of this ancient settlement are different from general Bengali culture and to explore the streets of Old Dhaka is to take a journey back in time.

GMB Akash

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka



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Distributed 10 more bicycles among 10 underprivileged students.

Dear friends,

By the grace of God, last week I was able to distribute 10 more bicycles among 10 underprivileged students.

Alhamdullilah, with these 10, a total of 50 bicycle distributions has been completed till now.

And I am planning to gift 10 more bicycles next month again.

One of the students, Rina said, “Brother, many girls from our village, who did not get a bicycle from you, are already married. Due to the distance of the school, they could not continue their education.

This bike not only helped us to continue our schooling but also saving us from child marriage.”

Like Rina, I have gifted one bicycle for each girl from each family, so they do not need to walk 10-12 kilometers every day which takes hours for them. They become exhausted and cannot pay attention to their education, and they tend to just drop out all together from school.

Thank you all my friends for your kind support and humanity! Without all your love and support I probably couldn’t go this far every day.

Please keep me in your prayers so that I can continue my journey to alleviate the sufferings of the people at least for one day.

P.S. If you want to help even one girl with a cycle, please send me a direct message.

Love and light

_GMB Akash

GMB Akash

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka



Photography Workshop:

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Distributing winter clothes to 500 unprivileged working women.

Dear Friends,

I have been distributing winter clothes to  unprivileged working women so that they can safely go to work in the mornings without harm to their health. Over 500 poor day labourers are being given clothes that they could otherwise not afford.

In order to express my appreciation to all for your generosity, I am presenting few happy faces. I would like to share the happiness and comfort with all of you that you have created and I want to pass on to you the gratitude for your love and care for these unprivileged women.

I cannot thank my friends enough. Still, we have a long way to go and we all want to continue such a journey in the future. We will leave footprints of love and kindness wherever we will step. Loads of love and blessings to you all.

Love and Light!

GMB Akash

GMB Akash

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka



Photography Workshop:

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Dreams of child laborers

Every time I am working with children on different projects, I like to collect their stories and I always ask them to tell me their dreams. Here, I am sharing with you 10 common dreams that these working children keep inside their hearts! These dreams can give us insights into the souls of these little angels.

Child labour in Bangladesh is sadly very common with 4.8 million child labourers or 12.6% of all children aged 5 to 14 finding themselves in the work force in order to survive or to help their family survive.

I have been working on this issue for the last 15 or more years to create awareness and to bring about positive changes in our society.During these last years, I have taken a lot of steps in an effort to contribute to the education of some of these impoverished working children.

A few years ago, I set up a school for unprivileged children outside of Dhaka where around 160 children from rural villages receive nearly free education. Most of their parents are illiterate and these children will be the first generation to be able to improve their lives and the lives of their families.

I have also given scholarships to hundreds of students who, otherwise would not be able to continue their education and might end up working in factories and in hard labour jobs.

Recently I have been trying to admit working children to school. I have been giving small businesses to their parents so they can earn enough money for the family and send their children to school instead of a factory. So far, I have admitted 22 children to school and have taken full responsibility for their education including all expenses. I will see that these activities will be continued for these children and hopefully more children, until my last breath.

These efforts have, of course, been effected by the COVID-19 health pandemic and the resulting economic and labour market shock that is having a catastrophic impact, in particular, on poor people’s lives and livelihoods.

Unfortunately, children are often the first to suffer. This crisis can push millions more vulnerable children into child labour.

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When I grow up, I want to be the owner of a factory and I will name my factory after my mother. _ Razu

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I want to send my younger sister to school; she loves to study and to go to school. _Sojib

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I want to build a factory where there will be more light, drinking water, fans and more space for working._ Munna

GMB Akash (9)

We will rent a big house in our slum so my parents and my younger sister can sleep comfortably at night. Now, in one room four of us cannot sleep. It is too warm and crowded!- Sobuj

GMB Akash (18)

My mother works as a maid and my father pulls a rickshaw. I want to grow up fast so I can earn more money every day. Then my parents won’t need to work._ Parvin

GMB Akash (17)

I wish I could work in a textile factory. They have a better environment with a fan, toilet and clean building._Shilu

GMB Akash (3)

I dream I will have my own factory where nobody will beat any children nor say bad words to them. _Jewel

GMB Akash (12)

I studied until class 3 and then we came to the city for work. I miss my school and our village. I Hope I can return to our village and study in our village school._Midul

GMB Akash (16)

I want to buy everything that my mother likes. Like new sarees for her, good shoes for her, anything she loves._ Koli

GMB Akash (5)


GMB Akash 

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka




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Tribute to Refugees around the world.

I have spent years documenting refugees and their children. In recent years I have been interviewing and photographing the tragedies of the families escaping for their lives to Greece from the Middle East as well as the desperate Rohingya and Bihari refugees escaping to Bangladesh from border countries.

To closely experience their lives as well as to help and speak with the families. I spent nights awake in Lesbos Greece waiting for dilapidated and overloaded boats to arrive from Turkey. Sometimes the boats never made it. I walked hundreds of kilometers along with the refugees while they were trying to cross the border out of Greece. In between, I was in their camps, shelters and anywhere they were, trying to discover their pain, suffering, and anguish that refugees must face.

My experiences were eye-opening, tragic, sad, terrifying, and oftentimes shocking.

You can do your part by SHARING THIS post about millions of refugees who need support.



Plight of Rohingya Refugees

More than 24,000 Rohingya were killed by the Myanmar military and local Buddhists. It also estimated that at least 18,000 Rohingya Muslim women and girls were raped, 36,000 Rohingya were thrown into fire.











The Refugee Crisis in Greece

As of December 7, 2015, more than 911,000 refugees and migrants had arrived on European shores since the year began and some 3,550 lives had been lost during the journey. Over 75 per cent of those arriving in Europe had fled conflict and persecution in Syria, Afghanistan or Iraq.

The civil war in Syria has led to one of the worst humanitarian crises of our lifetime.















The neglected ‘Bihari’ community in Bangladesh

While the international community is focused on the plight of Rohingya refugees, not many in the world are aware of the ordeal of Bihari Muslims who migrated from India in 1947.

This is not just a story of poverty and despair. This is the story of a community of over one hundred sixty thousand stateless Biharis who have lived like animals for the last 40 years.

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Continue reading “Tribute to Refugees around the world.”

Faces of Bhutan by GMB Akash 

Bhutan has continually been ranked as the happiest country in all of Asia, and the eighth Happiest Country in the world.

Bhutan does not believe in GDP as an indicator of economic growth and development. It has introduced another measurement known as Gross National Happiness.

Bhutan, the Land of Thunder Dragon, is one of the most intriguing places I’ve visited.

– Bhutan is truly a feast for the eyes.

A tribute to Kingdom of Bhutan



Bhutan is the only country in the world that is carbon negative – meaning that it absorbs more carbon dioxide than it emits.



Bhutan is the only country in the world that has no traffic lights.



The United Nations recognized Bhutan as a country only in 1974.



Plastic bags are banned in Bhutan.



Education and healthcare is free for all citizens.



Bhutan is the first country in the world to ban tobacco.




Bhutan is one of the last countries in the world to introduce television to its people. The government lifted a ban on TV—and on the Internet—only 11 years ago.




One-third of Bhutan’s population is under the age of 14; its median age is 22.3 years.




Isolated from the World Until The 1970s.





Bhutanese call their home “Druk Yul,” which means “the Land of the Thunder Dragons,” because of the extremely powerful storms which constantly roar in from the Himalayas.




The first foreign tourists were allowed into Bhutan in 1974.



Bhutan is a Buddhist country with strong beliefs.




Bhutan is famous for its colorful, vibrant festivals.



Bhutan has never been conquered.



It is mandatory for the Bhutanese to wear their national costume.





It is Illegal to Kill Anything.



All of Bhutan’s buildings must follow the traditional architectural style.





GMB Akash 

Photojournalist and Profile Photographer at Panos Pictures, London

Founder of GMB Akash Institute of Photography, Dhaka




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Train Track Life

Suddenly the inter-city train appears rushing at them on the tracks with its deadly noise which is the only thing that alerts the people. The scene includes a train that seems to be traveling as if to arrive at the slum but then ruthlessly goes right through it. It watches and touches both sides of the slum’s tin-roofs. Who could have ignored such g-o-t-a-n-g, g-o-t-a-n-g sound that raises heartbeats of the inhabitants of the Karwan Bazaar train track Slum in Dhaka on a daily basis… at least fifty times a day?

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People speculate that this train track-side slum had been built after the Liberation War of 1971. Though the slum does not seem too old, several inhabitants say that they have been living recklessly here for more than thirty years. Moreover, on both sides of the curvy train tracks that are lined with 1’000s of shanties, more than a hundred huts have been built in more recent times. Some of the smallest huts with only three foot high roofs rent for as much as 2000 taka (About $25). Those houses that are newly built with heights for standing-up cost 3000 taka (About $39) for a month.

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The muddy train tracks are loaded with wastage and leftover rotten vegetables. During an ordinary mid-day women are busy preparing lunch with difficulty trying to manage their mud clay oven cookers set up only one foot from the rail. When a train passes through anybody from the train could take away the potatoes that Marium Begum (35 years old) is frying in the pan. Marium says, ‘my eldest daughter is ten years old and I taught her how to save herself when the train rushes to our hut’. Marium clearly knows how much distance is safe for her two small kids. All children of the slum are well taught how to run away when a train arrives on the tracks. But a lot of times trains come simultaneously on both tracks and terrify the children. It happens many times from day to night without prior warning.

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Accidents are common and dangers are unlimited. The banyan tree root that grows from the hut of Kahinur is losing its leaves because many passengers who are riding on the tops of the moving trains are picking off the leaves for fun. It also amuses the slum children who have little to do. In this impossibly tiny strip of living space a lot of children lose their legs, hands and fingers in train accidents that take place in front of their parents’ eyes.

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Jaleha Kahtun says, ‘If we had something in which to live in the village, we would never come to live in this train track slum. In the village the river overflowed and took away everything and now here in the bazaar is everything we own.’ Jaleha Kahtun is a rotten vegetable seller in the bazaar. She has to go to work at 5:00 in the morning. So she lives in this slum that enables her to go to the bazaar as early as possible. All of the people who are living along the train tracks are climate migrants due to frequent flooding disasters in the country.

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Nothing has changed in their lives since they left their villages, but now at least they can feed themselves better. Sriti (15 years old) who is sitting in the middle between the two rail lines says, ‘We now understand how to act when a train comes. If you were in my place you might die without knowing where to go after seeing a train three feet in front of you. It takes experience.’

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When there are no trains all of the inhabitants are sitting on the train tracks, gossiping or arguing with each other. Children are playing here and there. To add some life to this atmosphere someone repeatedly turns on the music of popular Hindi songs. When Rasel (10 years old) starts dancing by waving his lungi and mimicking the song ‘Lungi dance’, Lungi dance,’ people near him also begin to move their bodies to the melody. But before Rashel shows his brilliant steps someone screams that the trains are coming on both sides of the rail lines. Nobody forgets to take their sitting arrangement away with them; children quickly move with their toys, a grandmother rapidly puts a pot over her vegetable curry to save it from the dust. Just like in a theater the trains get a stage upon which to perform for a few seconds and when they leave, all of the inhabitants return to their customary life on the tracks that have been occupied for more than 30 years.

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‘Street Boy’s Dream’

I am nobody and I have nothing. A simplistic human being stated as photographer who continued to question around his world. I conjure traveling in the different layers of myself and host an activist inside me by innate attributes. Yes, neither I am an industrialist nor do I hold a lion’s share of a company. For me CSR or charity is fancy word. But the passage I walked 15 years smiled melancholic to me. I marvel and interpret it to the world believing for a change. But the verb ‘Change’ itself very ‘dearly-won’. I found 18 years old drug users dyeing abandoned before I take him in my shoulder, I know how a sex worker cut off veins and her bleeding marks keep me awakening nights. I know how cold and deep an old lonely mother’s breathe can be in an elderly home. In the dormitories of injustice of the world I uphold to believe in ‘Miracles’.

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Roton a 12 years old street child once said me. “You rich people just talk, talk and talk! You are nonsense, all of you are nonsense. Children of my age goes to school, plays at park, their mother clean their skin, force them to get shower. Look at my hand, my hair, my skin no one tells me to take shower. I run to carry baggage of passengers, they throw me money like I am piece of shit, police beat me, and goons take my money. No one care, nobody. I sniff shoe glue, I want to lost, and I want to delete my memory. I curse you, I curse government, I curse my unknown parents, I curse everyone of this cruel world”.

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Roton’s voice echoing all the time and I can’t rest in peace with my eminence. This is the story of me and the people I care for. I feel it to tell it to you as I want you to love someone, to give tinniest love of your heart to the abandoned. Try to discover your image in the light of their eyes with love and hope. So sharing a small episode of my continual journey and once more telling you I am one of you, a person having no wealth at all but a heart to give away whatever I have. If my single word, small phase of explanation inspires you, please merge in.

You’re given this life as gift; make yourself a gift to life.

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‘By wiping off tears with corner of his shirt a Teenage boy was walking through rail line. The world seems ugly with eyes pour water. A weird anger runs in his vein which is unexplainable to him even. When he takes a seat under the lazy evening light, he started feeling the pain of his chest. His father beat him by clutching with mango tree. His step mother was literally happy and didn’t give him his lunch. His crime was to fall asleep in the field with cattle. Hungry Shuvo (13) started missing his dead mother, who may never allow him to go away from home without having lunch. In the station and in such a warm day who care about an oversensitive boy and his empty stomach. Anger, depression, misery everything mock at Shuvo. Two days, three nights Shuvo had only leftover from restaurants. When he jumped into a running train, he didn’t calculate about upcoming calamities of his life, only he heard the roar of his angry heart. When he started seeing around him, he saw many of other children reluctantly sleeping in the floor of station’s platform. In the time Shuvo feels he is not alone. Unknown faces become familiar and more affectionate. He sleeps with serenity after three nights of sleeplessness. From the day Shuvo is bohemian.

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When Shuvo tell me his tale, Raihan (11) laughs loud and say ‘Police first day take me and beaten up a lot. They thought I take drug. I don’t even know what Dandi (a drug street child takes) is’. All of their daily earning is 60-80 Tk by carrying baggage of passengers. Sharif (14) remained silent. Neither he wants to share his story nor listen to others. Depression is in his skin, in everywhere of his belongings. When I smiled at him, he smiles back too, then whisper, “Do you think I can do it ?” I replied “YES! Three of you can!’

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Their curies eyes, hope on me, their trust making me nervous inside. What I can do further? In a scorching afternoon I can lend my hands to them and show affection but what about their wound which is as fresh as their age! It’s been already months I seat with children show movies, counseling with them, taken them into lunch BUT THEN? One, two, Three thus hundred children and their dreams! Am I capable to hold them all! But I stop myself questioning. I started doing something. With my nameless family our journey begins. Shuvo, Sharif and Raihan are three members of my family.

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‘Can’t sleep last night Bhai, I pushed Sharif many times and ask him when the sun will rise and you will come’ – It was Raihan speaking to me in the final day. Three of them were wearing two paints and two-three shirts at a time. They don’t want to lose their precious dirty cloths so they wear it all the time. Returning from a long assignment and was on the way when I received call at 6 am from Shuvo asking when I will come. I change my mind and by hanging the bag I started towards them skipping home. I was 10 minutes late but as soon as I appear to the place three of them running to me like kitties. Besides them many of others were wondering with curiosity.  I heard a loud voice of Paglu (self-named) ‘Bhai, if they become good boys I will join you too. I swear my Mojnu (a street dog) that I will never take drug again.’ Paglu is along them with whom I pass a day monthly, show them my images and discuss topics needed to share.

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When I walked with my three boys I realize they didn’t eat anything yesterday. So first we went to have our breakfast and had it full. They listen to my each word carefully and we planned what we will do in coming three months. Already I taught them small calculation weeks ago. Then I went to buy clothes for them. Raihan is the youngest and started demanding many things while Sharif scolds him for his behavior. When again I ask them, is that they can remember their address/home and I can take them back like Masud, then their faces become cloudy. After a long period of silence Sharif said ‘After I become succeed in life I will return back. Then you can take me home’. I realize their mental condition and don’t force any more.

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In the shopping mall they started selecting their desired cloths in the time of bargaining I shared sharing their small story with curious people though none of the shopkeepers sacrifice a penny of profit for the sake of these boys. I don’t wonder because I know ‘responsibility’ term only referred to ‘family’ in our society. & we cannot change until we realize from ourselves. After buying cloths, we buy sandals, combs, mirror, oil, everything they needed to live a children life properly. I took them to cut their hairs and nails. Then I took them to a place for shower.

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When I stood beside them with soap they were the world’s happiest children in that moment. I can’t control to capture the moment with my camera. Crowd of people were following us, few of them thanks me and few of them make me annoyed. After having full packed lunch we moved to our working place.

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I gift them small opportunity of work and connect them with business under a mentor. MD. Melon has a popcorn business who alliance with us and agreed to be their supervisor. I gift them the capital for popcorn business for three months. At first day of their work I myself sell popcorn in the road with them to inspire them by standing next to them full time. We calculated profit and they put it in their own piggy bank as saving of their first day job. They were amazed to see that together they made a good profit and still had enough for food. Thus their story starts, every day after finishing school they come to their Supervisor and take products and go for selling. At evening they return back calculate prices and pass free time by playing. It’s been three months and they make their capital double. The name of their business is ‘Street Boy’s Dream’. Now they are planning to shift their business for selling Ladies accessories and cosmetics.

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Beside them other groups of children are doing different kind of small businesses by my gift which comes from my book ‘Survivors’. It is bless to share that ‘First Light Institute of Photography’, the photo school, I am going to launch in this August will be their institution and support center. I dream to go along with street boy’s dream. Their small steps are gift for my life, reincarnation of my soul. Their affection has filled my heart with utmost peacefulness. I believe, we cannot afford to lose hope, for we are all part of making some small and large changes, each day, each moment. We all can make a deposit into someone’s life. The best part of this form of giving is that it is LIMITLESS. By which we can make an incredible difference in their world.

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Life and Death in Pashupati

“Here and there they are seating in the courtyard and on the shrine platform with absorbed in detailed memories of a distant happiness. Or it is a place where elderly people are left by their families to die? Thousands question will haunt you but there is no one to answer you but only your inner realm of emotion. They submits to being fed, here, in a old home, It’s the same every day, every day…..I understand, when you get here you don’t worry about the future. Then, I mesmerize, May God bless and give them solace.” – GMB Akash

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Once you enter the premises of the Briddhasram at Pashupathinath you can’t help but feel like you are transcended time back at least half a century or more, to a place where the world moves very slowly.

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Looking at the bed side a damped photo of a grandchild while a grandma smiles and say she didn’t see her last 10 years yet she sleeps with a same photo in her mind. They were like reciting their homelessness to me. I have to capture their souls to keep their image from disappearing out of sight.

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There, you can see all grey haired elderly citizens doing nothing but spending lazy moments for hours in the courtyard and on the shrine platform. Some curious eyes follow you as you walk pass the welfare gate. If any of them is busy praying than other is trying hard to bend and dust off his cloths. A place, all you hear is the steady sound of the wheeled metallic support of an elderly with crippled feet or a faint sound of a broken radio which is playing Nepali song or news.

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(Social Welfare Centre Briddhashram is the only Elderly’s Home operated by His Majesty’s Government in the Kingdom Nepal. At present it is being operated by the name of Social Welfare Centre Elderly’s Home, Pashupati since 1977 A. D. The total sheltering capacity of this Elderly Home is 240 persons. These residents suffer from many illnesses associated with old age; including paralysis, failing eyesight and deterioration of mental faculties)

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For some it is a depressing scene to see people at the end of life, away from family, living in the Briddhasram. But for many, this is a place where they seek refuge from an ever speeding life and feel satisfied enough simply helping and sharing talk with the older citizens. The residents of the home don’t talk much to each other, which gives you an aura of wilderness where no word is spoken; but they really live for each other closely for rest of their life. This home for the elderly fills one with hope. What gives hope is that although they have lost families and possessions, the residents still care, they care for each other and they retain a deep sense of humanity.

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Many people believe that they must help and protect their parents, when they become old. I personally believe that this is a moral obligation that every child should have towards their parents, whichever the way they choose to do so but they should never let them break apart alone.

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“Through my lens I try to listen to their silent voices, in absolute solitude and silence,for I am sure I shall be able to hear about their unbearable wounds in which they stumbled upon alone years after year. So I take out my camera, go inside the place and merged with their pain”

– GMB Akash

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Decaying Earth

The overall global environment is declining fast and for Bangladesh it has been doing so more rapidly during the last few decades because of many obvious reasons. But we are still not surprised. We, all of us, pollute our own cities with trashes. So how can we claim owners of these factories, with hardly any education be conscious about the environment, feel the need to protect the environment? We need to count ourselves first to protect our own ecosystem to survive in an earth which will be a gift for our next generation – ONLY IF WE CARE

“Pollution is an immense crisis that is slowly destroying the world that we live in. It is crucial for every individual to do what he or she can to clean up the environment. Whether it is in the home or on a management level, or within us, every person is important and has the ability to make a difference and can help to stop pollution”

– GMB Akash

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The mighty river Buriganga is now so polluted that all fish have died, and increasing filth and human waste have turned it like a black gel. Even rowing across the river is now difficult for it smells so badly.

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Bangladesh has about 230 small and large rivers, and a large chunk of the country’s 140 million people depend on them for a living and for transportation. But experts say many of them are drying up or are choked because of pollution and encroachment. A World Bank study said four major rivers near Dhaka — the Buriganga, Shitalakhya, Turag and Balu — receive 1.5 million cubic metres of waste water every day from 7,000 industrial units in surrounding areas and another 0.5 million cubic meters from other sources. There is no fish or aquatic life in this river apart from zero oxygen survival kind of organisms. Bangladesh enacted a law in 1995 making it compulsory for all industrial units to use effluent treatment plants in a bid to save river waters from pollution, but industry owners often flout the rule.pollution (3)

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Dhaka city alone generates about 3500 to 4000 m tons of solid wastes per day. The amount increases with the increase of population every year. The domestic, commercial, street sweeping, combustible and non-combustible wastes include discarded food, grass, plants, paper, cardboard, textiles, plastics, polythene materials, glass, metals, and construction debris.

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Industries and factories have been polluting the water bodies in and around Dhaka city for the longest time. There are about 1000 small and large industries in Dhaka city producing a large amount of toxic and hazardous wastes contributing significantly to environmental degradation. The emission of various greenhouse gases such as CO2, CH4, among others from various industries, increases the overall temperature of the earth, resulting in global warming and making the area unsuitable for human habitation, animals and plant species.In the Hazaribag area of Dhaka there are 149 tannery units daily producing about 18,000 litres of liquid wastes and 115 m tons of solid wastes; nearly all of these are dumped in the Buriganga river, and a part is thrown into nearby drains and sewers. These wastes contain sulphuric acid, chromium, ammonium chloride, ammonium sulphate, calcium oxides etc. These may seep into the ground causing ground water pollution. Also, the intense, unpleasant odour affects the health of the people of the surrounding area. tannery wastes have a very serious and negative effect on the ecosystem.

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‘It is very easy for every single person to help stop pollution and stop destructing the earth. It can take little effort, but can be something that makes a huge difference. Start by evaluating how you can make small changes. Even the smallest changes in your own life can have a massive impact.’

– GMB Akash

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Invincible Faces

“I am fascinated to some faces, some characters who are incredibly important to me as a photographer or as an admirer. Many of these faces are invisible but their spirits for living life makes them invincible. Journey of portraying these invincible characters starts long ago when I find out there are certain people who are icons of heroism and enthusiasms. Over and over again I go back to them, find them out and by portraying them able to keep a part of these victors with me.” – Gmb Akash

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

Often get inspired by these faces I go to isolated group/people who are ordinary or I can say by having an urge to go to these people is my practice for understanding them. As an individual they are available around us, living life in troubled climate every day. But their willingness to over come difficulties titled them Invincible. My characters are raw, picked from a sticky street or from an isolated brothel or even from a dumped factory. Every face is passing a message of anticipation. I have learned to run my photography equipments; I have studied to learn to take portraits or getting a best environmental portrait. But when I concentrate beyond technical things, these characters become icons to me. I looked into them through the lens and I tried to pick the message of anticipation into the photograph. This is the biggest challenge which has no rules, which can never be taught, which can be only a self taught rule of getting invincible faces into photograph.

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

I emphasize the character. I want to present them vividly.  I go to very close to my characters. Apart everything, I focused them. In spite of taking environmental portrait, often I try to present the environment differently. When the characters become focused, my concerns packed to represent these faces as a representative of their own environment. I would like to make imagine the audience – where these faces are come form, where they live in, what they do. Inviting questions can be way of portraying significant things which we mostly over look.


© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

Most of the time, I have to work in very compact situation. Often I been located, where life is put in a box of measured 8 feet by 8 feet room or in a distressed noisy factory or even in an abandoned colony where I have to pass by three feet narrow road. I need to be patience and keep trying to work in these compact situations. Often I hardly get changes to use lot of lens. I am comfortable with 24mm and besides habituated I believe it is good to work with one kind to work fast and flexibly. For taking portrait I use 70mm. I do not like lot of distraction. My image should be clear and focused.

 © GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

For taking environmental portrait, placement of the character is hard thing. I keep in mind environment should not disturb the character, I am taking in. It has to be supportive to each other. But I prefer to believe in my photos, character is presenting the environment; environment is not presenting the character.

© GMB Akash /

 © GMB Akash /

– I always use natural light. No flush gun and no manipulation. Even in a bad light day I tried to use the available light into the character little differently so that it creates a different mood.

 – Simplicity and be straight is my rule. Be focused, use simple background, experiment with color and get closer to the character.

– However near or far is my character, however intimate or distant the gaze my camera directs, I always keep in mind the elements of composition and the technique that will best help me to communicate what I am trying to say.

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

– I prefer to intimate with the character I am going to portrait. Relation and building trust is important. Many times people refused me to take photos, but I never gave up, I always make them understand what I am doing, telling the effectiveness of the shot. And if I failed I do not force but I never fail to try.

– It is helpful to get environmental portraits by finding out where they spend their time, what the rhythm of their life is like and observing their personality.

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

“I think the art of photography is to observe and document in your own personal way. On my way I found these invincible faces which are inspiring to keep my searches on. These insignificant characters are inspirations to win over all chances of life. Connecting these invincible souls in photograph has no rules. Besides photography, I learnt from them, we need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We should think that we are invincible because we are.”

– Gmb Akash

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /



Ships’ Graveyard

“This is an emblematic depiction of the agony of hard labor. For saving themselves from hunger they breathe in asbestos dust and toxic waste. Thus they are risking their lives everyday. On the verge of death they risk their lives in order to endure themselves. They are passing their days on one of the world‘s most unregulated and hazardous industries, leaving a trail of debris, disability and death in its wake. I spend 10 days in the Gaddani ship-breaking yard north of Karachi in 2005.  I witnessed workers dismantling large ships, piece by piece using no protection, in absence of tools, where one wrong move could result in death, but they were continually depending in their bare hands. In a city of dying ships flames with smoke rising, tormented with ship body parts, metal residue, asbestos, and oil spills. Barefooted workers with little access to necessary tools are vanishing ships on the rusty sand of Gaddani and break down these steel giants coming from all the harbours of the world.”

– Gmb Akash

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The beach of Gaddani, 50 miles north of Karachi in Pakistan, has become one of the two world biggest cemeteries of super tankers, cargoes and other vessels in the world. Thousands of men, mostly Pashto migrants, toil over the ships. They are seasonal workers, a large number of native and immigrant workers returning to their homeland near the Afghan border at harvest time. The group consists of perhaps from Afghanistan. They pen for their beloved, whom they get to see only during the year ends. For around USD 1.20 a day, thousands of workers labour to dismantle dozens of ships each year at the ship-breaking yard in Gaddani.

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Rashed, a labourer at the Gaddani ship-breaking yard has worked for five years dismantling ships. He said: “Had we had any other way of earning bread, we would not have come here.” Workers are always under high risk of accident, though they hardly care to secure themselves. Under hitting rains of sparks, blowtorches split through the thick steel skin of a ship. As they are cut lose, the pieces of metal plummet to the ground with a roar. I saw workers, toiling ceaselessly, as though banished forever to an underworld.

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Many workers operate in tight spaces where the air is thin, and in high temperatures caused by hot welding, which is widely used, not to mention that they are constantly exposed to flammable liquids like paints and solvents. The work carried well into the night shipyard in Gaddani, Pakistan. This is the ship graveyard that serves as the final destination for a significant part of the world’s fleet.

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“Barefooted workers would take apart, bit by bit, the dying ships with their bare hands, shipyard in Gaddani, Pakistan.  On their shoulders, workers bore great metal plates to their destination. People complain about their crappy lives working in an air conditioned work place, imagine having this as your only option in life.”

– Gmb Akash

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“The creator has strangled me with his own hands.”

“It was 1999, when I first realize I need to focus stories on a helpless community. For that feeling, there was a story behind. As a child, I was a frequent visitor at my uncle’s house at Narayangonj, somewhat 25 kilometers north of Dhaka. My uncle had a hermaphrodite locally called as Hijra, whose name was “Khushi”-meaning happiness, but that is what she very much lacked in her life. During these visits I often saw my cousins with their friends taunting and making fun of Khushi, often even worse happened as when they were drunk they forced and made her to strip naked and dance in the tunes of common Hindi film songs. Since Khushi had no place to runaway to and had no means to save her from this humiliation, she gave in to the insults and harassment’s silently. Images of Khushi gyrating and quietly exposing her underdeveloped sex organs left a lasting impression that haunted me ever since.” –

Gmb Akash

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The Hijras live in-groups far away from a regular world. As for them living in normal family becomes an unending series of taunts from the society so the circumstances lead them to leave their regular family. They come to general people but live a life far different and painful in the dark allies, in isolation.

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Hijras live in their groups; each one has a leader often called “mother” or “Guru”. Members of a group do not take part in any activities without the permission of “mother”. Even the trimming of hair requires mother’s permission. Failure to get such permission results in a fine ranging from 250 Taka (US$5) to 5000 Taka (US$90).

The norm is, for a Hijra to leave home and join a community of Hijras. This happens mainly because living in the normal heterosexual surroundings becomes is unbearable due to constant taunts, insults as well as neglect. Hence joining other Hijras is normally the most logical thing to do. However, it often happens that the other Hijras will claim any Hijra child on the basis that it is a member of their society and should therefore live with them. Stories of the Hijra community accepting a Hijra baby as a gift, trying to buy it, or even stealing it are not necessarily untrue.

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Krisna and Robin performing at a wedding. A small portion of their income comes from singing and dancing at birthday parties and weddings.

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Like in the case of Najma, the occurrence was regular that in the case of any other Hijra. Najma grew up in a well to do family in Barisal, a river port town. When she was 13, a group of Hijra from Narayanganj went to her parents, but failed to persuade them to give Najma away to the group, but later due to the increasing adverse social environment she herself joined the group of Hijra latter in life making her home about 300 kilometers. Away from the parents home in Narayangonj.

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 Najma is now the leader of a seven-member Hijra group that I studied is bringing up two young Hijra children. Rubi and Chanda are now 14 years old. Najma told me that: ” I cannot be a mother in my life .so It gives me great pleasure to hear them call me “ma”-mother. They will inherit everything whatever I have”.  In order to get Rubi; Najma told me that she had to pay 5 000 taka (US$90) to Rubi’s impoverished parents.

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Because of their socially prescribed role as performers and spiritual healers, the Hijra appear to live their lives in merriment. In their own homes, Hijras prefer to live in a colorful manner. Their houses are almost always well organized and elaborately decorated. The same goes for their garments and ornaments. Since the Hijra believe they are women, they dress in saris and have ears and nose rings. Most of those I often met also had false breasts made with padding and often with the help of some oral contraceptive are thought to give growth on the form of breast. The hair is kept very long. But the voice and facial features are distinctly masculine, which they try to eliminate endlessly. They are physically strong and very well built. Generally the Hijras have two names one from their family when the were born and the other from the Hijra groups he joins, but often death their tombstone bears the male name that was given by the parents.

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They are not only striped from their basic rights but are also made to feel ashamed of themselves. Hijras get a mixed reception from the people; the middle class thinks them as bad omen even the sight of a Hijra in the morning is regarded as the same and believed can spoil the whole day. Where as among the lower class they are believe to posses spiritual powers as they are deprived of the joys of a normal life, their prayers are believed to be answered. They sustain themselves through their performance of singing and dancing at various ceremonies, paying them is regarded as an act of piety but even then getting the events and ceremonies are becoming scare. I saw them as somebody not different from myself and want to clear the common misunderstandings that circle them, the common idea about them is very vague and negative and their never ending pain and struggle is never brought to the book. My efforts will be to do the entire undo and uplift the images of these hapless groups of people called Hijras.

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“One day they sang to me a song written in light of their painful life. One of the lines that stand out goes: “The creator has strangled me with his own hands.” Yet they dream— repressing in their hearts, these strong sentiments and emotions they bear towards the Creator — a dream of their own independent community. As one of them told me – “You know Akash, if we had a great amount of money then we would have brought a four stored building and all ‘Hijras’ like us would have lived there. Then no one would have dared to neglect us.” And holding on to this dream in their hearts they aim for a normal beautiful life. So even in such a state of negligence some are continuing school and colleges; in the hope that after studying they will get a job like a normal person and will be recognized and condemned in the society not as ‘Hijras’ but as any other ordinary individual.” – Gmb Akash

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Unseen Existence

“Environs can explain much. You can feel the existence without presence. & sometimes absence is required to feel this presence more intensely. I started believing these things while I captured few moments of nonexistence. Yet these moments profound very much in exist of living being. I have taken these moments from various part of my world, however they are all alike. These are like footprints of a missing thing; you can assume the missing focus through edges. Welcome you in the puzzle. Fill in the gaps by your thought” – Gmb Akash

In the middle of the field, crops are baking by sun. These harvested crops are waiting to be carried to home. The field is reflecting efforts of an unknown farmer. © GMB Akash /

Rofiq ( 28 ) is a daily labor in his dream city ‘Dhaka’, Dreams pushed him here & reality left his identity far in a village, where his wife, children Shohel and Shaila & their parrot counting days & nights for him. In every six months reality let him go to where he left his heart. In Dhaka city, wall of a room of a slum is whispering his silent pains. In the walls he draws his feelings with the scratch of reality. He, his wife, their children & the parrot a family, all accommodated in the brick of lonely wall. © GMB Akash /

Bended trees remain to tell the tale of a nightmare of Cyclone. Aila hit the top of these trees & gave the mark of an unseen ferocity. The silence of the place is claimed by broken trees, miles after miles.  © GMB Akash /

Circus gradually loses its heritage for convergent entertainments. Still empty chairs of Circus are hoping to accommodate the vast missing audiences. Thus these refers the lost crowd & as well state for the hope of gaining back. © GMB Akash /

In every week slum dweller waits eagerly to take the taste of chicken. Fortune gives them the chance. In Rayerbazar- shop keepers sold chickens to restaurants & they left the head of those chickens for those waited people. Slum dwellers buy those chicken head once in a week. Fortune gives them a chance to take the taste of chicken by having these chicken head. Dhaka. © GMB Akash /

In the bank, the boat is waiting to sail. A family of eight members is dependent on this boat. The boat is stand for the arrival of the fisherman. A family exist behind this single boat. © GMB Akash /

This cassette player is a very dear thing for its slum dwellers. They have no space for placing this. So they hang from the top to manage space. Behind this cassette player, hundreds of slum dwellers entertainment awaits. © GMB Akash /

An old car standing at door step of its owner.  Manila, Philippines © GMB Akash /

Under the severe water crisis, inhabitants of shatkhira stand are line at mid night. Their water pots represent their standing in the queue. © GMB Akash /

Cyclone Aila ruined the house & the lives of inhabitants just before three days. People of this house have to leave their home. Aila force them to live on embankment. They family still tried to dry their children books on the roof of the house. After the devastating calamity they could not totally leave the hope to live in their house. © GMB Akash /

Day laborers of Philippine are drying their cloths outside their living place. © GMB Akash /

This is the living space of a rickshaw puller’s family. They bought the old TV from a second hand shop. At evening along neighbors, they happily straggled with the old TV to watch.   © GMB Akash /

“Life – a one way journey….We should not regret any moment which make us smile…We should make our self happy with all little pleasure of our life ….even if we have everything, we haven’t had tomorrow…Lets fill our all gaps by our presence of love, appreciations & thoughtfulness. We may leave forever, & then our environs might tell our tale ceaselessly. Let the light lit our absence.” – Gmb Akash

A World Full of Hungry Apes

“Photography has taken me to discover many unexpected territory as all time I wanted to see the sights of unseen & unforgiving incidents of reality. I was engaged in one of my personal project’s work on ‘sex workers’ for which I went to Madaripur. I have been working on ‘sex workers’ last 7 years & my works demand me to investigate their situation all over the country. Last year, in the month of August when I arrived at Madaripur it was afternoon. Shockingly I have seen thousands of apes are in street, running here & there. It was an unexpected thing of my life to see thousands of ill monkeys are moaning alone. I was traumatized, unspoken & felt awful when I understand all these thousands monkeys stand in front of me are HUNGRY. I always concern to cover stories of situation which need concentration for helping out by the assessment of the world. So I take out my camera & run to middle of them”

– Gmb Akash

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

In char Muguria area, Madaripur around 2,500 monkeys are facing severe food crisis. Due to acute food crisis many mother monkeys, passing days starved or half-starved, are even unable to breast feed their babies. Quite a few monkeys have already died in this serious situation. Concerned over the pitiable life of the monkeys, locals and visitors have urged immediate arrangement of food for the monkeys. Though the local communities are already poor to feed themselves but the heartbreaking scenarios of monkeys influence them to share their own food with them. Despite keeping distance with human the unable monkeys are taking foods from people’s hands. The hungry monkeys were competing for the inadequate foods like peanut or biscuit given by the visitors. They were also trying to eat whatever they got — grass, garbage, polythene etc. Baby monkeys are suffering badly in malnutrition. Even the water crisis made their lives more pitiful. Local community sought allocation for food for the monkeys but the higher authorities are yet to give any response in this regard.

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

“A mother monkey by carrying its dead child was passing from trees to trees. When it came in front of me & begged foods I realized the monkey did not identify its child is already dead. This pitiable situation made me terrified. These apes, whose residents are jungle, came out for food & begging to feed themselves. These climate victims are more alike my working project of  ‘Sex workers’. Human & animal all are helpless in front of starvation & need. They are survivors of dreadful situation which many of us over looked or never know”- Gmb Akash

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

© GMB Akash /

Life Indulges In Colour

I usually take a picture of a person and then afwerward when I close my eyes for recalling what I have taken – the first thing that hits my mind is – Colour. After observing a person if we try to recall, then unconsciously colours comes first in our mind. The texture of the skin, colour of hair, colours of cloths and over all colour gives us an impression about the mood of the sight. Colour is a strong element to illustrate a person’s traits. I believe every person cover a mood of colour.

From beginning of my career I am working for those people who are living in the edge of the society.While I started working with these people I surprisingly discover – life has taken all colours from them but still they are cherishing every moment of their life with colour. Colour is their courage; colour creates enthusiasm on them to fight to live for another day. Person, who has nothing, has colour in life. In beginning of my career I took all black & white photographs of those who are colourful.  I found out poverty, sorrows and depressions become vivid if I skip colour from their life.

To present – ‘the present’ I start working on colour. A street child, laborer of a road or even a homeless lady all of them has colour. People who are fighting everyday to live life are heroes to me and these heroes represent colour. Their skin tone, dresses, living places all are colourful and powerful. They are deprived from all happiness of life but yet they treating themselves with colour. While I discover the truth I learned to capture the mood of colour on them.

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   “…I realize I have no power to deny the colour of these colourful people who are straggling in a colourless, hopeless world, nevertheless they live and smile. So I can not ignore the yellow balloon of a homeless child or even a red bowl of a beggar of the street. This inspiration inspires me to work with colour. Ans I continued my journey in the path of a colourless world to meet with all these colourful souls…”- Gmb Akash

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cernival in cologne, germany. february 2007

Colour arouses my work for getting the depth of the sight. I got colour in different mood in the different part of the world. But I discover people who are fighting endlessly for surviving are more colourful than any part of the world. Because of this colour is more challenging to me. I take this challenge to explore the unrevealed spirit through every capture of mine.

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I have a special affection for red. I like to take picture in the early morning and late afternoon. Unpredictably red comes to my way often. People who are living in lower rang affectionate about the colour – Red. It is important to take a red shoot carefully. Contrast might made the capture disturbing, while too much red can destroy the attention for the subject. A good composition and balancing of colour can create an outstanding shot. Apart of all it is important to discover the right mood of colour in the right temperament of an individual.

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I go to country to country to explore colour differently. I have found out different colour in different cast. You will find people of power through colour. Your experiences & observations with colour will help you to reveal certain attribute of a community through colour.

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   –    I prefer to use natural light which allows me to capture the originality of the moment of colour.

   –   I try to find out a natural background which suits the subject’s colour instinctively perhaps my entire colour photos are – found situation. So I believe to observe more & more while traveling frequently.

  – Working with a single colour allows me to appreciate more intricate details within the       subject itself.

  –  I travel to discover for getting the unexpected shot yet carrying the note in mind that I am searching thing which I have seen several times but never been noticed. Searching without clue for a known thing helps me to get a good colour shot.

–    I only pick colour which has meaning to the subject.

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“While I am taking photos of these colourful souls I am learning to live in colour. By capturing these colour moments I have learned – few hints of red, blue & yellow has inspirations in our life. People who are fighting without anything in this world are healing their pains by indulging in colour”

– Gmb Akash

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‘Nothing to hold on to’

“When the train starts your feet will shake and you will automatically try to hold something, but there is nothing to hold on to. From 2005 I went up the train. Sitting or lying on the corroded metal roof of a train moving at 40 kilometers/hour is dangerous. By knowing that any time accident can happen you obvious to be nervous. It gives you an insecurity and makes it more risky. In that time there was no one who can tell me the rule of hanging in a running train, there was no example of photograph by which I can inspire myself to capture moments in camera. But I did not think twice to step into the slippery train and attempted to make a new series on the bravery of some insignificant heroic lives.”

Gmb Akash

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 © GMB Akash /

Seven years ago I had to travel many times by train to come to the city. During traveling I noticed low income people were traveling in the roof of the train and even in between joining line of the train. Most of them were low wage working class and traveled with high risk of severe accident. I was surprised to the fact when I discovered few of them traveled many times of the day with life risk. For knowing the reason my interest had taken me to the root. I pick my camera and leave my seat. Thus my journey starts in the running train. I had a basic curiosity to know about people whom I intend to photograph. From beginning of my journey I work for those people who are fighting endlessly to survive without anything but a smile. For taking photo of them I blended myself into the same conditions which help me to get the insight of the story. This inquisitiveness leads me in the top of the train. And I become one of the free passenger of regular running train. Thus I got familiar with the scary situation of the fearful journey; discover people and above all I took pictures.Train new (14)

© GMB Akash /

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Uncountable times, I went to the roof of the train. Often traveling made me familiar with scariness of a running train. People become well-known to me. I find out so many different stories of people and their determination of surviving. When I manage myself to step straight then I pick my camera and start capturing my feelings. No one travel to risk their life to get pleasure. All were unable to manage travel cost as they were living under the margin. Many of those travelers work as day laborer, many of them goes for selling fishes in city which they collect from their villages. All of them have to return also. These travel costs can not manage by them so they risk their life in the top of the train.

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© GMB Akash /

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This traveling is very addictive. When you will discover people who have power on them, who were bravely setting without caring anything the something will happen to you too. These people inspire you to live life without getting frustrated. They have nothing with them only have bravery to fight against all odds of life. So this journey put power inside me to fight in rest of my life with bravery and inspire to take any risk to live a life.

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© GMB Akash /

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In winter surface of the train get slippery, once I stepped without been concern and attempted to fall. It is difficult to take picture in opposite of the direction of the running train. Along other passengers I have faced terrible winter, unwanted rains and continual heat in the top of the train. Many times wires hit me, every time I thought I should not go more. But again I can not resist myself. Getting a good picture is toughest thing while you need to spend days and months for the right moment and for the right click. I won travel photographer of the year title in 2009 on the series. Besides all I am fortunate to be able to stand in this fearful journey which will continually give me power for rest of my life.

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“I recall all these journeys repeatedly. My achievement is that I established this series as one of favorite topic for photographers. I feel happy when I see photographers come from around the world to get a free ride in the top of the train and takes pictures. All these make me happy. I collect all these treasured moment and I am working for publishing a book soon on this series. I have to say, I am fortunate by killing fears of me to become able to go to the top of the train. There is nothing to hold on to, only your fearlessness”

– Gmb Akash

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© GMB Akash /

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Faces Tell Stories

“Among all – Human faces are most attractive to me. Every face has a story. We as photographers reveal that undiscovered story through our lens. Faces tell stories, tell the situation of the person, and tell the story of the place the person lives in. Wherever I go somewhere I always come across to faces those are different and eventually try to find characteristic of the community; every place has its own perception, story of smell, a person bears these things in his/her appeal. I search for story behind the face, so faces are incredible to me. Through out searching the portrait we could find strange stories of lives of people from different places that we never recognize before. I am going to share my experiences  during the journey of finding unnoticed faces

– Gmb Akash

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I search for getting an interesting character, a face that is unusual. I search such face in the middle of crowd. My first prior attention is the selection of the person, choosing the right character. Before I take any portrait I try to be familiar with the person. I talk to him/her and try to build a relationship with the person I will photograph. I give them time to be normal in front of my camera. I introduce myself to them. When the person gives his/her most natural expression to me, I take out my camera then start shooting. I believe it is the strongest factor which I practice so far to get a close snap of a human soul.

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For me light is the most important element for getting an excellent portrait. I try to use different type of light; I try to shoot in different time of the day to get different colour and mode of light. Every light has its own appeal for creating different portraits of an individual.

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Technically I use 35mm (f 1.4), 24-70 mm (2.8) lenses. But I take portrait with all kind of lens I have. Truly to say I do not care about my equipments much. For me the most important is – the person. Some times I also use very open aperture like 1.4 to get very low depth of field. So my eyes only go to my subject. As in some cases the surrounding environment is very important, so in that time I use aperture 8 to get all the elements in focus. But I do not like using very wide angel lens and I do not like a lot of distortion on the photo. I saw many people use wide angel lens for most of their works. If you use very wide thing, the picture look interesting because of the distortion. But in my opinion then the picture looks like it has taken by the wide angel lens not by a photographer. So I don’t use too much wide angle. And thus I try to make my images clean and direct.

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I have strong affection for color. I am a color photographer and I believe color photography is more challenging so as complicated. When I can meet the challenge I feel relieved. I am always very careful for using light and color. I love shooting in the early morning and late afternoon. But while I take portrait in the mid day I try to shoot them in the shadow, indoor or under flat light. It creates mystical environment.

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I try to use very simple background while I am taking close up portrait, so that the background might not disturb the subject and I try to use lot of – window soft light. Eyes have significance to me. One of the most important things in my images is eyes of the person. Eyes tell the story of that person. Eyes tell the unseen background of the person which I always hunt to discover.

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– For me the most prior factor is the character of my portrait. The light, color, eyes & the person must have to be blend with me. I align four factors together for taking a special portrait they are – the person, the light, eyes & color.

– Attention is the most hidden factor to get a good portrait. The person need to be familiar with you and the camera, it will be your prior duty to make the person natural as well comfortable for getting a best shot.

– Several rules applied by photographers for getting experimental portraits. Ever