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Weight of the water

Artist: Deepti Asthana
Year: 2021
Country: India
Video Duration

Video duration: 04:39

Drinking water is more vital for human survival than food. Everyone on earth has access to some source of water, but not throughout the year. Such is the situation in a tiny village  of North Western Himalayas, India. When the natural water streams run dry after monsoon, the life of young women revolve around providing water for domestic needs of the family for eight months. The amount of water essential for domestic use is far more than purely drinking water. Water is needed for cooking, bathing, washing, cleaning and for upkeeping livestock. That equates to a 100 liter water minimum every day for a family. And this demand is full-filled by young girls and women in the family. This project ‘Weight of the water’ is a portrayal of the water crisis in the North Western Himalayan region in India. It specifically focuses on the story of young women who are at the receiving end of this global crisis and paying a heavy price every day for the same. 

Uttarakhand, a state in North-western India might seem very abundant with more than 16 rivers criss-crossing the region, yet in most of the villages; access to water is a challenge. With the changing weather patterns and global warming, this Himalayan state has seen an enormous shortage of water. Due to deep gender biases the responsibility to fetch the water is solely on women and teenage girls. It affects both their health and education in unimaginable ways. This project portrays  how a global crisis affects women severely due to the deep rooted patriarchy in the region. 

The project was produced in the frame of Prince Claus Fund Partnership Network Program June-October 2021. Mentored byEmin Özmen/Magnum Photos and Cloé Kerhoas.

The program was implemented by Tbilisi Photo Festival in a partnership with Tbilisi Photography & Multimedia Museum funded by Prince Claus Fund within the Partnership Network Grant Program.


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