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Life and death in Calcutta Like tight rope walkers', life precariously hangs in the balance for the people who live in the slums of Kolkata. Health care to these people is almost non-existent but there is one Doctor who has dedicated his life to helping them to survive and stay healthy. A Photo story by Donna Todd/LightMediation


2364-03: Dr. Jack Preger MBE, a British Medical Doctor, began providing medical care to the destitute on the streets of Calcutta over 25 years ago. This was Calcutta rescues beginning. Since then he has worked tirelessly to build it into the thriving NGO it is today. He is currently leading efforts to diagnose and treat Multiple Drug Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR TB) and drug resistant HIV/AIDS, both emerging public health problems.


Life and death in Kolkata / 2364-01: A Scene at sunset of the district know as the Canal slums, where many of the people are forced to live in squaller with no fresh water, no toilets in Kolkatta.

Life and death in Kolkata / 2364-02: This picture shows people living in their slum area community and how one woman seems to be preparing the evening meal. The slum area is know as the Canal district

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-03: Dr. Jack Preger MBE, a British Medical Doctor, began providing medical care to the destitute on the streets of Calcutta over 25 years ago. This was Calcutta rescues

Life and death in KOLKATA / 2364-04: This service is provided for free and Calcutta Rescues takes a team of doctors and out reach staff, drives this ambulance to the outskirts of kolkatta to this squat area,


2364-02: This picture shows people living in their slum area community and how one woman seems to be preparing the evening meal. The slum area is know as the Canal district and some of the people have been settled here for a round 30 years. However recently the government has been forcibly evicting them more frequently as it has plans for building in the area.


Life and death in Kolkata / 2364-05: Patients wait in the back of Calcutta rescues out reach medical clinic, the patients are being immunized given worming paste, vitamins and their general health is checked.

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-06: patients wait to see the doctor in the back of an ambulance, which comes to treat them with free medical services twice per week.

Life and death in Kolkata / 2364-07:The staff of Calcutta rescue explain some medical treatment to a mother regarding her child. In the back of the ambulance. This service is provided for free and Calcutta

Life and death in Kolkata / 2364-08: Debu Chakraborbiy is an out reach medical assistant with Calcutta Rescue and has been working with them for around ten years, he is pictured here giving 2-year-old Oberdi


2364-07:The staff of Calcutta rescue explain some medical treatment to a mother regarding her child. In the back of the ambulance. This service is provided for free and Calcutta Rescues takes a team of doctors and out reach staff, to Nonadanga drives the ambulance right into the squat area where 300 people live with no basic needs or education, twice a week. Some of the people are refugees from Bangladesh.


Life and death in KOLKATA / 2364-09: A young lady with several children reads the instructions for her medication, demonstrated in pictures as she is illiterate. She has been given the medicine after seeing to

Life and death in Kolkata / 2364-10: Out reach worker and Calcutta rescue staff member Debu Chakraborbiy , is giving a talk to Mothers at Nontanga an area on the eastern outskirts of Kolkata. There

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-11: 4-year-old Chongittash lives in squalor at an area on the Eastern out skirts of kolkatta called NonadangaII. / India /

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-12: A young boy holds his ill brother, the little boy has the beginnings of malnutrican and the elder boy tries to feed him some small piece of food. They live in the squat area of


2364-15: A young woman pump clean water from one of the two pumps in the in the squat area of Nanadonga, it is around 40 kms, on the eastern fringes, of kolkata and there are no toilets and 300 refugees.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-13: A young girl around 1 years with her malnourished baby. Parents try and marry off their daughters as quickly as possible as they burden of feeding them is too great on the

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-14: A malnourished baby whose mother is only 15 years old. Parents try and marry off their daughters as quickly as possible as they burden of feeding them is too great on the

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-15: A young woman pump clean water from one of the two pumps in the in the squat area of Nanadonga, it is around 40 kms, on the eastern fringes, of kolkata and there are no

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-16: A woman from one of the slum area of Kolkata picks through rubbish as a means to finding small pieces of plastic that she can sell to be recycled. A meager income that keeps


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-17: Sheik Maran who is 90 years old a sufferer of the terrible illness; he has had the leprosy for thirty years. All his family is dead and he lives alone on the street, his only hope

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-18: Sheik Maran who is 90 years old a sufferer of the terrible illness; he has had the leprosy for thirty years. All his family is dead and he lives alone on the street, his only hope

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-19: A young mother suffers from leprosy, she is being consulted by the doctor at the Chitpur Leprosy clinic, the clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-20: A young mother sufferer of leprosy shows the signs of the disease through loss of her fingers. Her baby holds her hand at the Chitpuri leprosy clinic on the outskirts of


2364-11: 4-year-old Chongittash lives in squalor at an area on the Eastern out skirts of kolkatta called NonadangaII.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-21: A young mother sufferer of leprosy shows the signs of the disease through loss of her fingers. Calcutta rescue hold a free leprosy clinic and she attend every two weeks to

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-22: Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks most patients visit their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-23: Calcutta Rescue, hold Leprosy clinic 3 times per week, wounds are cleaned and dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-24: Sheik Mohammad 70 years at the chitpur Leprosy clinic although he lost his leg to the disease the doctors at Calcutta Rescue had a new artificial leg made for him and he


2364-17: Sheik Maran who is 90 years old a sufferer of the terrible illness; he has had the leprosy for thirty years. All his family is dead and he lives alone on the street, his only hope for survival is to put out his hand and pray to god that someone gives him enough money to eat. He says, 'the worst thing about suffering from leprosy is that it is getting more and more difficult to walk about', and that now, not even his hands work properly. He says that the only help he gets from anyone in the world is the Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-25: Sheik Mohammad 70 years shown here during a doctor consultation, at the chitpur Leprosy clinic although he lost his leg to the disease the doctors at Calcutta Rescue had a

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-26: Sheik Mohammad 70 years at the chitpur Leprosy clinic although he lost his leg to the disease the doctors at Calcutta Rescue had a new artificial leg made for him and he

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-27: Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-28: Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective


2364-19: A young mother suffers from leprosy, she is being consulted by the doctor at the Chitpur Leprosy clinic, the clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-29: UMAESH MURTI 28 is employed by Calcutta rescue to make special shoes for the lepers who loose the feeling in their feet and so are vulnerable to further injuries. The shoes

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-30: A young girl at the Chitpuri Leprosy clinic has her wounds cleaned and dressed with the constant care from the doctors she should be 100 percent cured. / India /

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-31: SHANTY DEVI, during a consultation with the doctor at the Chitpur Leprosy clinic, the clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-32: A woman who seems in pain and deep in thought as she sits in the waiting room of the Calcutta Rescue, Leprosy clinic, which is held 3 times per week. Her wounds will be


2364-10: Out reach worker and Calcutta rescue staff member Debu Chakraborbiy , is giving a talk to Mothers at Nontanga an area on the eastern outskirts of Kolkata. There are around 300 people living in squalor in these slums, only 2 water pumps and no toilets. Debu is being educating them regarding hygiene, worms, parasite, sanitization and general cleanliness issues.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-33: The waiting room of the free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides treatment for a range of ailments including

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-34: A patient leaves the waiting room of the free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides treatment for a range of ailments

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-35: A man who sufferes from Leprosy and has lost his legs, walks about on his stomps with specially designed shoes provided for free by the Calcutta rescue. Seen here at the

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-36: A man who sufferes from Leprosy and has lost his legs, walks about on his stomps with specially designed shoes provided for free by the Calcutta rescue. Seen here at the


2364-42: Street Children attending school at Tala Park, enjoy a nutrious meal provided by Calcutta rescue.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-37: An elderly man feels discomfort in his eye whilst attending the daily free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-38: An elderly man feels discomfort in his eye, which shows sign of cattarach, whilst attending the daily free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-39: An elderly man sho suffers from cataracts waits in the waiting room of Sealda clinic which is situated in Lorreto School. His grand child leans on him as he is probably tired

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-40: A baby cries as she has just been given an important needle for immunization, by nurses at Calcutta rescue. / India /


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-41: A brave child looks worried as she has just been given an important needle for immunization, by nurses at Calcutta rescue. / India /

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-42: Street Children attending school at Tala Park, enjoy a nutrious meal provided by Calcutta rescue. / India /

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-43: Street Child attending school at Tala Park, enjoy a nutrious meal provided by Calcutta rescue. / India /

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-44: A mother struggles with her child who suffers from down syndrome, she is out the from of the clinic in Tala park and will be transported to the Sealda clinic in the Calcutta


2364-41: A brave child looks worried as she has just been given an important needle for immunization, by nurses at Calcutta rescue.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-45: In a loaned office given by the Bengal government in Panchayat far east in village around 4 hours drive from Kolkata. Calcutta Rescue holds a clinic called Kaparpuri, today

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-46: In a loaned office given by the Bengal government in Panchayat far east in village around 4 hours drive from Kolkata . Calcutta Rescue holds a clinic called Kaparpuri, today

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-47: In a loaned office given by the Bengal government in Panchayat far east in village around 4 hours drive from Kolkata. Calcutta Rescue holds a clinic called Kaparpuri, today

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-48: At the clinic for tuberculosis suffers,'Kaparpuri',8-year-old Devi Bibi has been diagnosed with Tuberculosis after a sputin test performed by doctors from Calcutta Rescue, who


2364-44: A mother struggles with her child who suffers from down syndrome, she is out the from of the clinic in Tala park and will be transported to the Sealda clinic in the Calcutta rescue van, so as her child can receive a free immunization.


Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-49: Ballav Bahaur 65 of Taldi, he is a sufferer from Tb and says he feels so very weak, "I cannot move swiftly and I am so skinny, no meat in my skin". He said he regulary coughs

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-50: Ballav Bahaur 65 of Taldi, he is a sufferer from Tb, walks to the Calcutta Rescue sub clinic called Patikhali. People come from miles around as there is close to a train

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-51: Ballav Bahaur 65 of Taldi, receiving medication from a doctor from Calcutta Rescue village sub clinic called Patikhali, he is a sufferer from Tb and says he feels so very

Life and death in Calcutta / 2364-52: An ancient woman who probably has spent her whole life living in this slum next the canal area of Kolkata, prepares to enter her shack, showing how house proud and aware of


Life and death in Calcutta Like tight rope walkers', life precariously hangs in the balance for the people who live on the streets and in the slums of Kolkata. The spidery thread between life and death is confronted with determination and grit everyday. Health care to these people is almost non-existent but there is one Doctor who has dedicated his life to helping them to survive and stay healthy. Most doctors aspire to a successful medical career, and a nice income, not so, for this British physician. Dr Jack Preger began Calcutta rescue in 1979 and he has been nominated for a Nobel Peace prize for the incredible work he has achieved giving medical care to the downtrodden of Calcutta's streets and slums. In 1972, when Preger had just qualified, he answered a call over the radio for doctors to help the people of then newly independent Bangladesh. In 1975, he set up a 90-bed clinic in Dhaka and two farms on the outskirts of the city. However, his work in Dhaka came to an immediate end when he discovered that a Swiss NGO was operating a child-smuggling racket and exposed it, and because of this he was deported to Singapore in 1979. Not long after his deportation he went to India and worked in Kolkata for six months under Mother Teresa's Missionaries of Charity. Mother Teresa testified that, "I have seen the work of Dr Jack Preger in Bangladesh and what I saw was very good for the people and the children. I do hope that he will be able to give that service to the people in Calcutta also". However, Preger thought

that he would be able to do more if he operated independently, he say's " there was far too much prayer, far too little medical care". He remembers an occasion when a guard at a shelter run by Mother Teresa refused to admit two dying famine victims because it was past 6 p.m. An enraged Preger grabbed the crucifix hanging from the man's neck and twisted it until the man started to choke. "In the name of Christ," Preger roared, "let us in!" Terrified, the guard complied. He left Mother Teresa's Mission and started a medical clinic for the poor below the flyover connecting the Howrah Bridge, where a lot of the towns poor live. However he still works with the sisters and quite often brings patients so ill that death is inevitable to the hospital Mother Teresa set up called, 'Kalighat, the Home for the dying and of the Pure Heart. Those brought to the home receive medical attention from the sisters and are afforded the opportunity to die with dignity, according to the rituals of their faith; Muslims are read the Quran, Hindus receive water from the Ganges, and Catholics receive the Last Rites. "A beautiful death," Said Mother Teresa, "is for people who lived like animals to die like angels-loved and wanted." Today, Calcutta Rescue is a registered charity but before being established as a registered charity Jack worked under cover as Calcutta Rescue, illegally' operating his street clinic's 6 days a week for, for fourteen years. The authorities eventually threw him into kolkata's Alipore prison for operating these clinics. He shared a filthy cell with 40 other prisoners, scores of rats, and thousands of cockroaches. This did not discourage him one bit. When asked "How can you bear all this indifference and hostility to your efforts to do good?" "What keeps you going, even in

the face of failure?" Preger answers, "God doesn't judge you by the results," "Different circumstances lead to different results. What matters is the struggle, that you try. And if you try, God will never forget you." Today Calcutta rescue includes four undercover clinics, three schools and two vocational centers. Plus provides many other services to the poor in West Bengal, including free treatment in for multi-drug resistant TB and free treatment for resistant cases of HIV on second-line anti-retroviral drugs. It employs 150 locally hired staff. Dr Perger's story is extraordinary, like Mother Teresa, his dedication to the poor in Kolkata was the result of a ''command out of the blue'' In the most unlikely circumstances, he was told to ''become a doctor'' when sitting on his tractor, spreading manure on his farm in Wales. But unlike Mother Teresa, he has little time for prayer, avoids churches except for weddings and funerals, calls most religious ceremonies ''theatre'' and instead of flirting with the authorities, he fights with them, a fiery quality which resulted in being thrown into prison. In a bamboo pole and tarpaulin hut, at clinic set up for lepers by the Ganges river, slum area known as Chitpur, I met Sheik Maran who is 90 years old a sufferer of the terrible illness, he has had the leprosy for thirty years. All his family is dead and he lives alone on the street, his only hope for survival is to put out his hand and pray to god that someone gives him enough money to eat. He says, 'the worst thing about suffering from leprosy is that it is getting more and more difficult to walk about', and that now, not even his hands work properly. He says that the only help he gets from anyone in the world

is the Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. Leprosy is one of the oldest diseases, a disease often spoken about in the bible. It was not discovered in the modern world until 1869 by a missionary named Wellesley Bailey. When Bailey encountered leprosy for the very first time, he was stunned, he was quoted, "I almost shuddered...yet at the same time I was fascinated, and I felt, if ever there was a Christ-like work in the world it was to go amongst these poor sufferers and bring them the consolation, the hope". In the midst of the people suffering from the disease at Chitpur, one simply cannot agree more. The disease still has such a stigma attached to it, and this stigma results in people leaving it far too late in seeking out a doctor. If the disease is found in the early stages it is one hundred percent curable. However Leprosy is endemic in West Bengal, particularly in the southern part of the State. The disease affects around 12% in a population of around 60 million. Of these patients,1.5% are blind due to the complications of leprosy whether from complicated cataract or uveal affection. One such lady at the Chitpur clinic Shanti Devi who is 75 and has suffered from leprosy for fifteen years, she had cataracts and was blinded by them for many years. When she came to the Chitpur clinic the CR doctors admitted her to hospital to have them removed. She informs us, " When I arrived at the hospital I was an invalid my daughter took care of me as I could not see. I was in hospital for one month and Calcutta Rescue paid for everything. When the doctors took off my bandages after the operation I could see.


. The first thing I saw was my daughter and she was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. I came to the hospital incapable of helping my self but when I left it, I had the ability of caring for myself. "The need is infinite in Calcutta," said Dr Preger. "You get all kinds of migrants coming in - some are without any work, some have been evicted from the squatter's colonies, the slums." "There is no one organization that could possibly manage the health care of that population in Calcutta," he said. "There are estimated to be a million people on the streets in Kolkata, the actual medical needs of most of those people cannot be met, either by the government or a charity or NGO." One such colony of people that Calcutta Rescue attempts to supply excellent health care to, is some 300 people, refugees from Bangladesh. These people were recently evicted from an inner city slum area, in the Canal area of Kolkatta. The people of the slum believe that the government started a fire in their slums to forcibly remove them. Of course these marginalized and forgotten people have no proof. The new area on the outskirts of Kolkatta, has one water pump, no toilets, there is nothing out there for these people, but even so, together they built little shacks from bamboo and old plastic bags. The medical team actually drives an ambulance directly into this poorest of the poor slums on the outskirts of Kolkata to provide medical services. The Doctors come out here with a well-recorded immunization program; they provide vitamins and education regarding hygiene. At one such makeshift clinic from out the back of an ambulance, I met two little girls the elder a sad quiet little 8 year old and

her very frightened little 2-year-old sister. Together they climbed up into the ambulance to be immunized and given vitamins. The little two year old was crying, just like any baby does when being immunized. When the job was done and the brave eight year old picked up her little sister and gently placed her back up on her hip and drifted back to the slums, the doctor turned to me and told me, ' they are all alone, they have nobody to take care of them, so now they stay here in the slums." Their parents - the victims of the fire that broke out in the inner city canal area slum. There were many people who lost their slum homes in this fire- and like these two tiny girls, they had nowhere else to go but to the outskirts of town, where some families have set up make shift shacks. They have no water, toilets and no idea of hygiene and sanitization, apart from the vital care that is provided by Calcutta Rescue. The public health system of Kolkata and West Bengal are despicable. Public health is often context-bound and it is not meeting the needs of ground-level realities faced by the people of the streets and slums. In an ideal world there would be no need for the help from an NGO that provides vital life saving and changing medical treatments such as those provided by Calcutta rescue. Recently a down on his luck rat catcher (one of the trades of the poor in Kolkatta's metropolis), was struck by a heavy metal object, which fell on his ankle in the back yard of Dr Jack. Dr Jack heard the screams and cry's for help and went out to see what had happened to the poor fellow. What he found when he came to the aid of the injured rat catcher, were minor cuts and a fractured leg. However rather than send the penniless man in an ambulance Jack took him to the hospital himself. In the fear that if he

relied on the ambulance, the man would have had his leg amputated rather than plastered. Due to the lack of beds people's limbs are regularly amputated when simple healing would have been the better out come for all concerned. The government of Bengal admits it has been unable to deliver health service effectively along the entire chain of primary to tertiary. The Left Front government here is thinking of opening up its dilapidated primary healthcare sector to public-private partnerships. By doing so, it is admitting that despite 27 years of unbroken rule, it does not have the wherewithal to deliver services even at the lowest levels. Dr RD Dubey, joint secretary, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) said, "Many state primary health centers are not functioning because there are no doctors there. We believe things can be improved if local resources are used." On the ground, doctors at medical colleges-cum-hospitals have to treat even simple cases instead of functioning as referral units. Doctors avoid rural postings, and those who do go to rural areas are often left there for years. The best doctors avoid teaching posts since it debars them from private practice. The battles are ongoing between construction and counter- construction and fundamentally finding out the truth about health care in the state of Bengal. What is needed is a better understanding of the organization of health care at a system level, which would go beyond the confines of the health department and delineate the appropriate role of the government with regard to the private sector. There have been many disturbing incidents in the government hospitals in West Bengal. Recently a twenty-year-old girl was taken to one of the government hospital but the doctors on duty refused to

admit her, in spite of her serious case. When they finally agreed to admit her after 24 hours of her waiting on the doorstep. It was too late the girl did not survive her injuries and instead was taken to the morgue. A few days before a six-month-old baby girl in a critical condition was being rushed by her parents to the medical college hospital. A severe traffic jam created by a massive rally on the way rendered the parents completely helpless. When they finally reached the hospital they were told that they had to deposit 1000 rupees around 14 Euros before treatment could be started. The unfortunate parents did not have that amount with them. By the time they returned with the money, it was too late, their baby had died. These are not isolated incidents there have been many similar cases of negligence and such horror stories as stray cats and dogs preying on the new borns in the government hospitals. A few doctors have been removed from their positions due to their negligence. And a series of government orders have been passed, one of which states, "no government hospital can refuse to admit any patient irrespective of the availability of beds. These steps the government believes would pacify the people at least for a time. In its long 27 years, this is not the first time that the Left Front run government in West Bengal is faced with such embarrassment on the health front. Yet, amidst all this governmental chaos and disorganization, Dr Jack Preger and the team at Calcutta Rescue's work goes on in orderly highly organized way. The clinics, the schools, the training centers, the oases of hope in Calcutta's soulless slums. It is a tribute not just to an amazing doctor who will not yield to a bullying government that throws its brute


might behind its cruel system. It is also a tribute to a man's indomitable spirit that keeps fighting the Kafka-esque system in a foreign land that he has accepted as his own workplace. For those who live on the mean streets, in the darkest slums of Kolkata, for the poorest of the poor, as Mother Teresa so poignantly described them, Preger is the face of hope. Of love and charity. The one man who could save them from sickness and certain death without ever asking you whether you are a Hindu or a Muslim, a Brahmin or a Dalit. Nor would he try to figure out if you can afford the treatment. Without Calcutta Rescue, the poor of Kolkata will continue to live their lives in a constant prayer, in lonely isolation, that only the truly humble and weak, will ever understand.


Captions 2364-01: A Scene at sunset of the district know as the Canal slums, where many of the people are forced to live in squaller with no fresh water, no toilets in Kolkatta. 2364-02: This picture shows people living in their slum area community and how one woman seems to be preparing the evening meal. The slum area is know as the Canal district and some of the people have been settled here for a round 30 years. However recently the government has been forcibly evicting them more frequently as it has plans for building in the area. 2364-03: Dr. Jack Preger MBE, a British Medical Doctor, began providing medical care to the destitute on the streets of Calcutta over 25 years ago. This was Calcutta rescues beginning. Since then he has worked tirelessly to build it into the thriving NGO it is today. He is currently leading efforts to diagnose and treat Multiple Drug Resistant Tuberculosis (MDR TB) and drug resistant HIV/AIDS, both emerging public health problems. 2364-04: This service is provided for free and Calcutta Rescues takes a team of doctors and out reach staff, drives this ambulance to the outskirts of kolkatta to this squat area, twice a week to provide free medical care. These 300 people living out here have been evicted by the Indian government from there inner city squat. They live with no basic hygiene requirements, no toilets and only two water pumps between them. They are given no education; some of the people are refugees from Bangladesh.

2364-05: Patients wait in the back of Calcutta rescues out reach medical clinic, the patients are being immunized given worming paste, vitamins and their general health is checked. 2364-06: patients wait to see the doctor in the back of an ambulance, which comes to treat them with free medical services twice per week. they live in a no mans land called NONADANGA II in the eastern fringes of the city. 2364-07:The staff of Calcutta rescue explain some medical treatment to a mother regarding her child. In the back of the ambulance. This service is provided for free and Calcutta Rescues takes a team of doctors and out reach staff, to Nonadanga drives the ambulance right into the squat area where 300 people live with no basic needs or education, twice a week. Some of the people are refugees from Bangladesh. 2364-08: Debu Chakraborbiy is an out reach medical assistant with Calcutta Rescue and has been working with them for around ten years, he is pictured here giving 2-year-old Oberdi Sanga some vitamins and de worming past to the child. Who's parent died in the recent fire, which broke out in their old home in the canal district slums. She lives here alone with her 8 year old sister Piasckau, although children in these place rarely stay alone for long, some family usually takes pity on them and gives them a roof over their heads and feeds them whatever food they have. 2364-09: A young lady with several children reads the instructions for her medication, demonstrated in pictures as she is illiterate. She has been given the

medicine after seeing to the doctor in the ambulance set up at Nanatanga. This service is provided for free and Calcutta Rescues takes a team of doctors and out reach staff, to Nonatanga on the east fringes of kolkatta drives the ambulance right into the squat area, where 300 people live with no basic needs or education, twice a week. Some of the people are refugees from Bangladesh. 2364-10: Out reach worker and Calcutta rescue staff member Debu Chakraborbiy , is giving a talk to Mothers at Nontanga an area on the eastern outskirts of Kolkata. There are around 300 people living in squalor in these slums, only 2 water pumps and no toilets. Debu is being educating them regarding hygiene, worms, parasite, sanitization and general cleanliness issues. 2364-11: 4-year-old Chongittash lives in squalor at an area on the Eastern out skirts of kolkatta called NonadangaII. 2364-12: A young boy holds his ill brother, the little boy has the beginnings of malnutrican and the elder boy tries to feed him some small piece of food. They live in the squat area of Nanatonga, it is around 40 kms from the city and there are no toilets, only two pumps and 300 refugees. The only help they get from anyone is a free medical service that Calcutta rescue provides twice a week. 2364-13: A young girl around 1 years with her malnourished baby. Parents try and marry off their daughters as quickly as possible as they burden of feeding them is too great on the family. . They live in the squat area of Nanatonga, it is around 40 kms from the city and there are no toilets, only two pumps and 300 refugees. The

only help they get from anyone is a free medical service that Calcutta rescue provides twice a week. 2364-14: A malnourished baby whose mother is only 15 years old. Parents try and marry off their daughters as quickly as possible as they burden of feeding them is too great on the family. . They live in the squat area of Nanadonga, it is around 40 kms from the city and there are no toilets, only two pumps and 300 refugees. The only help they get from anyone is a free medical service that Calcutta rescue provides twice a week. 2364-15: A young woman pump clean water from one of the two pumps in the in the squat area of Nanadonga, it is around 40 kms, on the eastern fringes, of kolkata and there are no toilets and 300 refugees. 2364-16: A woman from one of the slum area of Kolkata picks through rubbish as a means to finding small pieces of plastic that she can sell to be recycled. A meager income that keeps her never ending cycle of poverty in constant reality. 2364-17: Sheik Maran who is 90 years old a sufferer of the terrible illness; he has had the leprosy for thirty years. All his family is dead and he lives alone on the street, his only hope for survival is to put out his hand and pray to god that someone gives him enough money to eat. He says, 'the worst thing about suffering from leprosy is that it is getting more and more difficult to walk about', and that now, not even his hands work properly. He says that the only help he gets from anyone in the world is the Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed.


face.

2364-18: Sheik Maran who is 90 years old a sufferer of the terrible illness; he has had the leprosy for thirty years. All his family is dead and he lives alone on the street, his only hope for survival is to put out his hand and pray to god that someone gives him enough money to eat. He says, 'the worst thing about suffering from leprosy is that it is getting more and more difficult to walk about', and that now, not even his hands work properly. He says that the only help he gets from anyone in the world is the Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. 2364-19: A young mother suffers from leprosy, she is being consulted by the doctor at the Chitpur Leprosy clinic, the clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. 2364-20: A young mother sufferer of leprosy shows the signs of the disease through loss of her fingers. Her baby holds her hand at the Chitpuri leprosy clinic on the outskirts of Ckalkota. The clinic is run for free by Calcutta rescue. 2364-21: A young mother sufferer of leprosy shows the signs of the disease through loss of her fingers. Calcutta rescue hold a free leprosy clinic and she attend every two weeks to have her disease checked by doctors, her wounds dressed and support given. She holds onto her young child and the pain of the reality of her life is etched into her pretty

2364-22: Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks most patients visit their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. Leprosy is one of the oldest diseases, a disease often spoken about in the bible. It was not discovered in the modern world until 1869 by a missionary named Wellesley Bailey. When Bailey encountered leprosy for the very first time, he was stunned, he was quoted, "I almost shuddered ... yet at the same time I was fascinated, and I felt, if ever there was a Christ-like work in the world it was to go amongst these poor sufferers and bring them the consolation, the hope". In the midst of the people suffering from the disease at Chitpur, one simply cannot agree more. One of the important things when suffering leprosy is to keep your limbs moving as shown here this man plays with a ball to move his hands. 2364-23: Calcutta Rescue, hold Leprosy clinic 3 times per week, wounds are cleaned and dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. Leprosy is one of the oldest diseases, a disease often spoken about in the bible. 2364-24: Sheik Mohammad 70 years at the chitpur Leprosy clinic although he lost his leg to the disease the doctors at Calcutta Rescue had a new artificial leg made for him and he seems to get about quite well with it. He attends the chitpur clinic every two weeks to have the doctor

check his symptoms and have his wounds cleaned and dressed. He travel 4 hours on a train to get there and then turns around to return. Citizens with disabilities get free train travel in India. 2364-25: Sheik Mohammad 70 years shown here during a doctor consultation, at the chitpur Leprosy clinic although he lost his leg to the disease the doctors at Calcutta Rescue had a new artificial leg made for him and he seems to get about quite well with it. He attends the chitpur clinic every two weeks to have the doctor check his symptoms and have his wounds cleaned and dressed. He travel 4 hours on a train to get there and then turns around to return. Citizens with disabilities get free train travel in India. 2364-26: Sheik Mohammad 70 years at the chitpur Leprosy clinic although he lost his leg to the disease the doctors at Calcutta Rescue had a new artificial leg made for him and he seems to get about quite well with it. He attends the chitpur clinic every two weeks to have the doctor check his symptoms and have his wounds cleaned and dressed. He travel 4 hours on a train to get there and then turns around to return. Citizens with disabilities get free train travel in India. He is off on his way home now and looks pleased with the service he has been given for free today. 2364-27: Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. Leprosy is one of the oldest diseases, a disease often spoken about in the bible. It was not discovered in the modern world until 1869 by a missionary named Wellesley Bailey.

When Bailey encountered leprosy for the very first time, he was stunned, he was quoted, "I almost shuddered ... yet at the same time I was fascinated, and I felt, if ever there was a Christ-like work in the world it was to go amongst these poor sufferers and bring them the consolation, the hope". In the midst of the people suffering from the disease at Chitpur, one simply cannot agree more. 2364-28: Calcutta Rescue, every two weeks he visits their Leprosy clinic to have his wounds dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. Leprosy is one of the oldest diseases, a disease often spoken about in the bible. It was not discovered in the modern world until 1869 by a missionary named Wellesley Bailey. When Bailey encountered leprosy for the very first time, he was stunned, he was quoted, "I almost shuddered... yet at the same time I was fascinated, and I felt, if ever there was a Christ-like work in the world it was to go amongst these poor sufferers and bring them the consolation, the hope". In the midst of the people suffering from the disease at Chitpur, one simply cannot agree more. 2364-29: UMAESH MURTI 28 is employed by Calcutta rescue to make special shoes for the lepers who loose the feeling in their feet and so are vulnerable to further injuries. The shoes are also given to diabetic people. His father before him was also a shoe maker and he proudly continues the tradition working with CR. 2364-30: A young girl at the Chitpuri Leprosy clinic has her wounds cleaned and dressed with the constant care from


the doctors she should be 100 percent cured. 2364-31: SHANTY DEVI, during a consultation with the doctor at the Chitpur Leprosy clinic, the clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. One of the symptoms of leprosy can be cataracts and Shanty was suffering with them and completely blind around one year ago. Thanks to the doctors of Calcutta Rescue, they paid to send her to a private hospital to have them removed. She said " I was in hospital for one month and the Calcutta rescue paid for everything, when I went in I was an invalid as I could not see and my daughter had to care for me all the time"."When the doctors, took off my eye bandages, I was so amazed that I could see and the first thing I saw was my daughter and she was so beautiful". Today Shanty although still a sufferer from leprosy feels so happy because she can at least care for herself and see the world again. 2364-32: A woman who seems in pain and deep in thought as she sits in the waiting room of the Calcutta Rescue, Leprosy clinic, which is held 3 times per week. Her wounds will be expertly cleaned and dressed. The clinic is a makeshift affair, but the treatment is not. Only the most effective anti-leprosy drugs are dispensed while stumps and sores are expertly cleaned and bandaged. Leprosy is one of the oldest diseases, a disease often spoken about in the bible. The disease is still associated with much

shame and people are often out cast from their communities. Although the disease is almost 100% curable, many people leave it too late to get to a doctor in time for it to be cured. Either due to there being no doctor, no money for one or shame. 2364-33: The waiting room of the free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides treatment for a range of ailments including diabetes, heart diseases, cancer and neurological conditions. 2364-34: A patient leaves the waiting room of the free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides treatment for a range of ailments including diabetes, heart diseases, cancer and neurological conditions. She is studying the pack of medicines she has been given by the doctor. Many of the patients are illiterate and so instructions are in picture form. 2364-35: A man who sufferes from Leprosy and has lost his legs, walks about on his stomps with specially designed shoes provided for free by the Calcutta rescue. Seen here at the Sealdah medical clinic which is in easy reach to city dwellers left to live on the streets and in slums. 2364-36: A man who sufferes from Leprosy and has lost his legs, walks about on his stomps with specially designed shoes provided for free by the Calcutta rescue. Seen here at the Sealdah medical clinic which is in easy reach to city dwellers left to live on the streets and in slums. 2364-37: An elderly man feels discomfort in his eye whilst attending the daily free

medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides treatment for a range of ailments including diabetes, heart diseases, cancer and neurological conditions. 2364-38: An elderly man feels discomfort in his eye, which shows sign of cattarach, whilst attending the daily free medical clinic located within the compound of the Loreto Day School, this daily clinic provides treatment for a range of ailments including diabetes, heart diseases, cancer and neurological conditions. 2364-39: An elderly man sho suffers from cataracts waits in the waiting room of Sealda clinic which is situated in Lorreto School. His grand child leans on him as he is probably tired from the long wait. The clinic is open every day and sometimes see's up to 300 patients. 2364-40: A baby cries as she has just been given an important needle for immunization, by nurses at Calcutta rescue. 2364-41: A brave child looks worried as she has just been given an important needle for immunization, by nurses at Calcutta rescue. 2364-42: Street Children attending school at Tala Park, enjoy a nutrious meal provided by Calcutta rescue. 2364-43: Street Child attending school at Tala Park, enjoy a nutrious meal provided by Calcutta rescue. 2364-44: A mother struggles with her child who suffers from down syndrome, she is out the from of the clinic in Tala park and will be transported to the Sealda clinic in the Calcutta rescue van, so as her child

can receive a free immunization. 2364-45: In a loaned office given by the Bengal government in Panchayat far east in village around 4 hours drive from Kolkata. Calcutta Rescue holds a clinic called Kaparpuri, today they are educating and medicating tuberculosis suffers for free. These pictures are part of the educational material. 2364-46: In a loaned office given by the Bengal government in Panchayat far east in village around 4 hours drive from Kolkata . Calcutta Rescue holds a clinic called Kaparpuri, today they are educating and medicating tuberculosis suffers for free.This woman has just taken her medicine and appears to find swallowing difficult. 2364-47: In a loaned office given by the Bengal government in Panchayat far east in village around 4 hours drive from Kolkata. Calcutta Rescue holds a clinic called Kaparpuri, today they are educating and medicating tuberculosis suffers for free.Show here is Parilily Bibi with her baby Muskan Bibi who is 4mths, they both have TB. Parilily first noticed her symptoms four months ago when she started to cough up blood and she has had a fever ever since. She say's she feels very tired and that everything is an effort. She only recently found out that both her daughters the other 8years, tested positive too after a sputin test. They will all be on medication and should be cured within six months. She thanks the team from Calcutta rescue, she thinks they angels sent from god, or maybe even god's themselves. 2364-48: At the clinic for tuberculosis suffers,'Kaparpuri',8-year-old Devi Bibi has been diagnosed with Tuberculosis after a


sputin test performed by doctors from Calcutta Rescue, who set up clinics near her village in rural Bengal. Around 170 patients were detected here last year. Without these clinics they would go undetected and the disease would spread to the greater population. The clinics play a vital role in controlling the disease. Government programmes fighting against the spread of TB have thus far proved ineffective and the efforts of NGOs like Calcutta Rescue are a small drop in the ocean, but the fight presses on. 2364-49: Ballav Bahaur 65 of Taldi, he is a sufferer from Tb and says he feels so very weak, "I cannot move swiftly and I am so skinny, no meat in my skin". He said he regulary coughs blood and feels he must have something else wrong with his bones too but he is so scared that doctors have not found it, he says hew thinks it must be cancer and that he will die. However after the doctor inspected his medical reports he confirmed that he had a very bad case of Tuberculosis and because of his weakness may not survive the coming summer where temperatures are expected to reach over 45 degress celcious. 2364-50: Ballav Bahaur 65 of Taldi, he is a sufferer from Tb, walks to the Calcutta Rescue sub clinic called Patikhali. People come from miles around as there is close to a train line and services many villagers who would otherwise find no medical assistance. 2364-51: Ballav Bahaur 65 of Taldi, receiving medication from a doctor from Calcutta Rescue village sub clinic called

Patikhali, he is a sufferer from Tb and says he feels so very weak, "I cannot move swiftly and I am so skinny, no meat in my skin". He said he regulary coughs blood and feels he must have something wrong with his bones too but the doctors have not found it, he says hew thinks it must be cancer and that he will die. However after the doctor inspected his medical reports he confirmed that he had a very bad case of Tuberculosis and because of his weakness may not survive the coming summer where temperatures are expected to reach over 45 degress celcious.

2364-52: An ancient woman who probably has spent her whole life living in this slum next the canal area of Kolkata, prepares to enter her shack, showing how house proud and aware of hygene by slipping off her shoes to go inside. Even though her floor is made of dirt. She is a good example of the dignity and pride the people from the slums and streets still hold for themselves.


Life and death in Calcutta