At first i really wanted to know what the local population felt about foreign invasions past and present, us being here now, the brits and others having colonised… The Indian people i have met are always very polite and loathe to be critical. But i now i realise that for so many, the present is such a struggle, that they could not give a damn about the past, it’s the last thing on their mind… Have also met many “anglo indians”, does not matter how many generations back the British ancestor may be, the line of anglo indians continues. People refer to themselves that way and for them generally english is their first language.
J who works for care and share, tells me when they go into the slums of Vijayawada (which they do regularly to look for abandoned children), that everyone there knows that the cars are from a charity so they know they are there to help, so they don’t ask for money and just get on with their lives. They want to be photographed because they know this might help their situation (but then pretty much everyone here wants to have their photo taken so i guess its just a local trait). Apparently many of the kids here in the orphanage come either from this slum or the train station. Care and Share have people who patrol these areas daily/nightly looking for homeless kids. They have to approach them very cautiously and it takes a long time to gain their trust, initially a lot of the kids don’t want to leave their old lifestyle and they are not forced to by the charity, they have to come of their own volition. Some kids run away when they get here, so the charity goes looking for them and tries to persuade them to come back, they say that no matter how many times a child runs away, they always leave a door open for them to come back.
Photos requested by subject: (first time from a tractor) They spotted me from far off, parked at a junction and waited for the photo. The women in the back then went all giggly, but they asked me!