DEVELOPMENT | BBC's Welcome to India Documentary21.12.12
I couldn't talk about Waste without referring to some of the most resourceful people on earth. Welcome to India was a three-part documentary on how different individuals from India survived by being sagacious and innovative (don't these words mean the same thing?). Home to over a sixth of the world's population, with 1.2 billion people who live in crowded cities, this observational series hones in on the not only the resourcefulness of the people, but on the resilience and hope that they find within the materials that surround them. We experience/witness Kaale's search for gold dust in the drains in the gold district; Rajesh and Sevita's makeshift beach house/pub; Johora's massive plastic bottle recycling business to support her seven children and her struggles with the local gangsters(one of my favourite characters btw); Kanye's dangerous job which deals with large waste materials in the form of discarded ships he has to cut up for its scrap metal (steel is like gold); Ashik's beef fat business (which is at one point infested by maggots--poor Ashik) which he renders down to make tallow to be used in soaps or cosmetics; Brothers Prakash and Mangesh, who live in an illegal settlement, as they both lead separate paths--Prakash is destined for Bollywood and Mangesh is the chosen child who gets to go to university; Swapan's fish market and his hard work mentality during the large Durga Puja festival--to celebrate the cycle of life; and Sujit's disposable clay tea cup business and how he tries to make this recyclable and highly biodegradable item into a larger business plan.
What follows are the actual videos from each Episode. I can't tell you how much I was hooked on this Dickensian series (of course the Anthropologist in me was intrigued and questioning).