The Indian Himalayan Photography contest was organised during the SMDSXI at Leh, Ladakh on the theme of ‘Impacts of Tourism in the mountains’. Issues related to mountains is not really an abstract idea, but it can be challenging to capture it in a single frame. This is more than just a competition, as it is about inspiring people to do more with their cameras, to think beyond the ordinary, to make images and films that stand out, aware people and can drive action.Due to the short notice, there were few entries. Winners were declared during the valedictory session of SMDSXI.
Where there would be uninterrupted views of surrounding mountains from anywhere in Leh, now there are towering hotels that interrupt the view. In witness of the Tsemo and Leh's palace, each new hotel raises another floor to offer better views.
Tourism is the main source of income for the porters who take tourists for treks to Dzongri which is situated in KNP( Khangchendzonga National Park) a UNESCO world heritage site located on western part of Sikkim. The horses carry all the essentials to the trekking areas so that trekkers can make the climb easily without carrying loads as they walk uphill. The porters who depend on tourists for their source of income have suffered a lot during the recent pandemic as the world closed down for travellers. The impact of tourism in the hills has affected many homes and lives as they struggle to earn. This shot was taken before the pandemic and shows tourism at its best.
We must make efforts to make tourism sustainable.
“I took this photo of two old friends outside one of their home in Zhavame village before they embarked on their daily sojourn to the fields. I shot it in black and white. It reminds of my childhood when we developed photos in roll films and had photo albums. I remember looking at photo albums with pictures of my parents and grandparents and this image is somehow very evocative of that era when photography had not gone digital. I think almost everyone has a picture similar to this, of their parents or grandparents in black and white.”
The Tea Man walks across the Laitlum canyons in Meghalaya serving tea to the travellers in the peculiar kettle.
“Today I am so privileged to share this picture of grand Himalaya. This picture was taken in Choglamsar village in Leh Ladakh. The picture was taken in the winter of 2018. The fuzzy cold winter morning and the mighty Himalayan ranges running parallel seemed endless and my eyes kept on searching more and more as the hunger for beauty and tranquillity kept up growing exponentially. Can you imagine we have so much jewellery hidden in this grant Mother Nature?”
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