Photographer: Ranita Roy
Title: Standing on the edge
Location: India
Period: 08/2019 - 05/2020
Category: Environment

They know it will come again and take away precious things in a splash. People will lose their homes, belongings, and loved ones.

The East Coast area is one of the most sensitive areas in India due to its repeated exposure to cyclone hazards. Technically, the cyclone affecting the Eastern Coastal area of India is called the Tropical Cyclone which is a storm system with a closed circulation around a center of low pressure, driven by the heat released when moist air rises and condenses.

Nevertheless, the residents of these regions refuse to migrate elsewhere unless they are forced or rendered completely homeless. Though social tensions do arise due to discrimination on the relief work, cyclonic disasters generally act as social-leveler and social cement enabling the victims to continue to reside in the land of their deceased predecessors.
According to National Cyclone Risk Management Project (NCRMP), more than 32 crore people inhabiting the cyclone-prone areas of the country are vulnerable to the hazards related to the cyclone. This figure is almost one-third of India’s population

India's eastern coastal area is hugely affected by back-to-back cyclones.
From 2019 I covered four huge cyclones which hit the Bay of Bengal. First Fani (2019), Bulbul (2019), Amphan (2020), and very recently Yaas (2021). I saw domestic animals on the road who were starving, people abandoned them just because they didn't have enough food. Being a student of Environmental Science as well as a storyteller, I would like to make this project as documentation of life after the natural disaster where people are losing their land and life day by day and simultaneously every time they re-establish their life with new hope, though they know, it will be demolished again by the next cyclone.



Through the window

Sea is viewing from a fisherman s home window in puri beach when he was recalling the night of devastating cyclone Fani

Fishing

A fisherman is trying to collect fish for living after the cyclone Amphan As the whole area in Sundarbans is waterlogged and there are running out of food

Belongings

A calm landscape with fisherman fishing net and clothes after the cyclone Amphan br People left their homes to the cyclone center during the cyclone but their belongings are still there

Waterlogged road

As the cyclone made landfall coastal and riverine embankments across southern West br Bengal disintegrated The heavy rains during the storm caused flooding across the entire region br The next day in the Sitalatala Basti a slum in the Andul town of the Howrah district of southern West Bengal a woman bucket in hand tries to cross a waterlogged alleyway in order to collect drinking water

Aftermath of cyclone Amphan

On 21 May as the cyclone subsided residents of Uttar Hatgacha a rural settlement in br Andul town started moving out of shelters to take stock of the damage Ainal a local resident who lives near the NC Paul Bridge in the town lost entire sections of his house including the kitchen when a huge tree crashed on top of it A neighbor helps Ainal move supplies and luggage from his destroyed home

Sea snakes

An old woman is collecting sea snakes to sell them to the market as many sea snakes and other sea animals died during cyclones and local people collect them to earn their living

Uncertain future

A woman is looking at her house roof which is destroyed by cyclone Fani

Water crisis

Access to safe drinking water became one of the critical concerns in the immediate br aftermath of the super cyclone In Uttar Hatgacha a small locality of Andul town locals were forced to collect potable water from the sole tube well in the area located near the Uttar Hatgacha Sporting Club Adding to their difficulties was the fact that a tree had fallen right on top of the tube well

Loss of the season’s crop

According to official estimates almost four lakh farmers of the South 24 Parganas br district have been affected by the cyclone with a majority suffering a complete loss of the br season s crop A betel-leaf farmer whose fields were in the Sixth Mile area near Bakkhali tries to save whatever he can of this season s harvest

Broken school building

On 23 May across South 24 Parganas in an arc of around fifty kilometers that spread br from Bakkhali to Patharpratima the landscape was dotted with broken buildings Near the Fifth Mile a point just before the village of Bakkhali a primary school lies broken due to the cyclone with more than half the roof ripped apart by the winds

Abandoned domestic animal

Domestic animals are on the road they were starving people abandoned them just because they didn t have enough food after the Fani cyclone hit Orissa on 3rd May 2019

It will come again

A man is standing on the puri beach with a bag full of seashells br I took this image to show the uncertain future of those people who live in the cyclone-prone area