Calcutta's Red Light Kids
Sonagachi, Calcutta. The Red light district.
Photographer Zana Briski lives in the area for two years in order to photograph the women of Calcutta. During this time 'Auntie Zana' teaches the children the art of photography forming a particularly close bond with some of the kids. Kochi, Avijit, Shanti, Manik, Puja, Gour, Suchitra, Tapasi and Mamuni star in this film about the children of Calcutta.
The filmmakers decide to try help the children get an education. Gour, one of the young boys, expresses the fear that the girls will become prostitutes, drug addicts and thieves. Without opportunities, the children face being sold, forced into prostitution or married off at a young age. Already two of Zana's children were forced into prostitution and married at 11 years old and Avijit's mother was burned to death by her pimp.
A rare glimpse into the red light distinct of the emerging global power. The film won an Oscar for best documentary and is worth watching.
More information about the project and the children can be found here. The website provides updates about the children featured in the documentary and supports the children (who chose to be supported) in their education.