Photo exhibition at Naganahalli village 

Sarada Mahesh | November 2018

An exhibition of photos taken by the kishoris of Namma Maathu, Namma Jaaga shed light on the issues of health, education, and infrastructure in the village 

On November 20, 2018 at Naganahalli village in HD Kote, an exhibition was set up to display the photographs taken by the kishoris of Namma Maathu, Namma Jaaga. These photos were the results of the digital literacy and camera training sessions done with them and were put up in the only school located in Naganahalli – an aided school, supported by the local Church. It is also the only school that is accessed by girls from nearly five to six villages. These trainings were done in Naganahalli, Jakalli and Kattemaneganahalli.  

The event was attended by the local anganwadi worker, teachers, residents, and also by high school children from classes 8, 9, 10. After the exhibition, the students sat with the elected representatives for the makala gram sabha and began discussing the problems and issues faced by them in the village.

The Chief Guest was the President of the Naganahalli Panchayath and the Public Department Officer of the Naganahalli Panchayath inaugurated the event. Impressed by the event, they mentioned it was the first time in the history of the village that a makala gram sabha (children’s village assembly) was being conducted.

In their photographs, the kishoris captured nuances of village life such as girls and boys on their way to school, daily wage laborers at work, and girls out on the streets in the evenings. Through these photos, they tried to highlight problems and concerns that they faced as well as those that faced by the villagers. Here, a sakhi looks on proudly at the work done by the kishoris.  

After the exhibition, the students discussed their grievances with the elected representatives for the makala gram sabha. Since the students of the school came from different villages (those near Naganahalli), they said that the bad state of the roads made it hard and unsafe for them to travel, impacting their mobility. The representatives said that they would try to approach the Centre to get a budget sanctioned to repair the roads.  

They girls also mentioned that the drains had not been cleaned in a long time. The reason for this was that the pournakamikas (garbage collectors) had not been paid their salary, and hence refused to work. The local representatives took this issue to heart and promised to ensure that the payment would be made and that they would be more wary of this in the future.  

The students also requested a library in the school. While they agreed that the public library located in the village was helpful, having a library within the school premises would allow them the freedom to spend more time with the resources in the library. The representatives readily agreed to set up a library for the school.