In this day and age of smartphones and social media, almost everyone dabbles in photography. Be it a picture of yourself or the splendours of nature -- most of us are familiar with the concept. But while we may see dozens of photographs on a daily basis, there are some photos that set themselves apart because of the stories they tell.
Each year, the Pulitzer Prize Board goes through countless entries bestow awards in 21 categories for achievements in newspaper, magazine and digital journalism, literature, and musical composition in the US.
Over the years, there have been several Indians who were part of teams that received the prestigious awards. In 2018, Reuters' Danish Siddiqui and Adnan Abidi received awards for their photos highlighting the plight of Rohingya refugees. The two had been part of a team that created a series on the topic.
One of the photos taken by Danish shows a refugee pulling at a child as they walk towards the shore. They are wading through the water, and have just crossed the Bangladesh-Myanmar border. Another shows a woman kneeling down and touching the ground after reaching Bangladesh.
Adnan Abidi was the other Indian on the team, and his photo was a closeup that showed a seven-year-old Rohingya boy with his father's hand on his chest. The jagged scar across the child's chest comes from when he was shot before crossing the border.
Perhaps slightly closer to home were the award winning photos of the three journalists who covered Kashmir in 2019. This was a tumultous year for the northern state, with the abrogation of Article 370, the split of the state into two union territories and subsequently a lockdown of sorts and the detention of several political leaders. Dar Yasin, Mukhtar Khan and Channi Anand from the Associated Press were awared the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography for their coverage.
The portfolio of pictures by the three on the Pulitzer web site included one of a masked person attacking a police vehicle and another of masked people with variants of the Kashmir flag, besides photos of mourners and protesters. As per the board's website, their photos were selected "for striking images of life in the contested territory of Kashmir as India revoked its independence, executed through a communications blackout".