Sweat of Their Brow

An old way of life comes under assault.

The historic village of Taleigao in Goa was once renowned for the quality of its fresh produce. For hundreds, if not thousands, of years agriculture here had been the province of the Gaude tribe, among the earliest settlers of Goa. But now, the times they are a-changin’. Developers and builders have moved in and commandeered fertile fields, laying concrete turds in their wake. The area available for cultivation has shrunk so drastically that an important traditional occupation is in its death throes.

For the past 5 years I have tracked the vicissitudes of the Gaude in the tiny ward known as Nagale.

Mukund Kuttikar in Nagale

Working the fields in Taleigao, Goa
5D Mark II, 135L

 
Sweat of his brow: Mukund Kuttikar

Sweat of his brow: Mukund Kuttikar
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 MP

 
Nisha Tivremkar with fresh kohlrabi

Nisha Tivremkar with fresh kohlrabi
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 100 f/2 MP

 
Gulabi Kuttikar, tending to her chillies

Gulabi Kuttikar, tending to her chillies
5D, 35L

 
Growing red amaranth (tambdi bhaji)

Growing red amaranth (tambdi bhaji)
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 100 f/2 MP

 
Gomati Gauns

Gomati Gauns, never before photographed, too shy to look into the lens
5D Mark II, Zeiss ZE 100 f/2 MP

 
Laxmi Sirvoicar, washing fresh batch of radish

Laxmi Sirvoicar, washing fresh batch of radish
5D, 35L

 
Sitabai Canconkar, in her patch

Sitabai Canconkar, in her patch
5D, 24-105L

 
Rohidas Kuttikar, proudly holding on

Rohidas Kuttikar, proudly holding on
5D, 35L

 
The fast disappearing fields

The fast disappearing fields
5D, 24-105L

 
 
Facebook|Twitter|Google+|Email|Subscribe|RSS|Top
  • […] A couple of related posts are here and here. […]ReplyCancel

  • B. Colaco - December 11, 2012 - 9:22 pm

    I am not to sure why a reference has to be made for the traitor freedom fighters like Narayan Naique. Best wishes to Raju trying to undo the bad which was done by the generation of 1961.ReplyCancel

  • Ignatius Fernandes - December 11, 2012 - 6:13 am

    These photos brought a flood of memories of my childhood in Margao Borda where people grew rice and other vegetables. These self same fields have been concreted with Fatorda football ground and the Bhavans and no cultivation is taking place instead we have to rely on imported vegetable from other states. Why can’t the government encourage our people to grow food with subsidies provided for these people.ReplyCancel

  • jc - December 10, 2012 - 7:36 am

    Once again Rajanbab, Thank you very much for these delightful images. It is, indeed, refreshing to see the greenery and fresh produce; also the self-pride on the faces of the ‘sons and daughters of the soil’.

    Brilliant.

    How long will this land of ours survive the concretization?

    Thanks for sharing.ReplyCancel

  • Nandkumar Kamat - December 10, 2012 - 3:58 am

    Absolutely amazing capture of the toiling innocent face of creative traditional Goa-the real worshipers of land goddess Santeri
    Fired the engineer of irrigation dept last week for not helping them to desilt the Nagali rivulet which is their drainage lifeline
    Now Raju Narayan Naik, son of freedom fighter Narayan Naik is fighting for these people
    State government should use these for their calendar
    I enjoyed these moods-and could relate to every expression at soul level
    Perhaps these are last photoportraits-who knows what happens here after 5-10 years… this is our last generation to toil hardReplyCancel

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *

*

*

*
To prove you're a person (not a spam script), type the answer to the math equation shown in the picture. Click on the picture to hear an audio file of the equation.
Click to hear an audio file of the anti-spam equation