Dark Alleys


“These disorders — schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, depression, addiction — they not only steal our time to live, they change who we are. In the time period of working with drug addict, I encounter tremendous shiver in thought of helplessness that how they are silently dying in these dark alleys and there is no dark Knight to hold them straight only we are here to celebrate the funeral of these fallen stars”

-  GMB Akash

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A drug user is showing his drug pethedrine

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Drug addiction is a major social evil in Bangladesh, affecting thousands of young people and their families. There are thousands of addicted people in Bangladesh and most of them are young, between the ages of 18 and 30 from all walks of life. Drug addiction in young Bangladeshis is mainly seen because of reasons like depression. People try to remove depression using drugs as a tool. And this is how they become addicts.

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Drug users are taking drugs by sharing same needle with each other. Injecting drug users have few places to turn, and they are one of the groups most at risk of contracting and spreading HIV. Heroin is mostly smoked within aluminum foil or cigarette paper, but in Bangladesh this is injected. Injections through infected needles can cause diseases of the liver, brain, heart, lungs and spinal cord. Estimates of the number of people living with HIV/AIDS in Bangladesh range from 2,500 to 15,000 most of them are affected while taking drugs. A Heroin addict may need about Taka 500 worth of the drug a day. They neglects the needs of the family, and those are non-earning may sell off family assets. They also go out on the streets for mugging and dacoity.

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“Rickshaw driver Mohammad Bashir has been addicted to heroin for most of the last 13 years. His habit cost him his job and put an enormous strain on his family. Like most addicts, he often uses shared needles. Police has caught him in the spot, members of his addict team has managed to fly. But police caught him, while he is continually requesting police to leave him in the word of his promise that he will not inject him any more with drugs”

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Drug addiction is increasing among the street children who live without a family, love and care. Bangladeshi youth are ‘huffing’ shoe glue, a drug locally called ‘Danti’, which is seriously harmful to mental and physical health. Up to 17 percent of street children in capital Dhaka are addicted to drugs. Children as young as 10 years old are also experimenting with alcohol, phensidyl, Heroin, Baba, Ganja, pethedrine, and other forms of available drugs. For managing the money for drags these children spends all their earnings on drugs. Some time they beg whole day in the street and end of the day spends everything on drugs.

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“Bitter experiences are there too. I visit all danger territory where these addicted people living senselessly. Few of them try to beat me sometime, few of them tied me with their arms and cried and cried, few of them burst out in depression and few of them wants to end their sufferings. But this is cycle of unbearable torment which has no end. In a world with chaos and hunger, everything becomes a guerrilla struggle. It becomes almost impossible to save lives or grow dreams sometime. But yet these lives deserve our affection, attention and sympathy. No medicine is as effective as love to them. “– GMB Akash

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50 thoughts on “Dark Alleys

  1. You portray their plight with such sensitivity and beauty…. But it’s unbearable to consider what they’re experiencing for even a moment. Are there any groups working with this growing population?

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    • Yes, there are NGO’s but how long one can stand with drug addicts, Families get relief leaving these addicts in rehab, street addict has no future than death. I am showing the one side of the coin, still I didn’t share the whole one.These people can barely fulfill their budget for foods, drug is a very fancy thing for them but this is the main point, imagine what sufferings has lead them to fade out themselves from reality by depending on drugs!! How many of us can understand the depth of the field? I wish there comes a point when these issues are really undertaken with great sensitivity.

      Like

  2. How sad to see what drug and alcohol can do to a lost and depressed soul. You are correct, what is most needed is love. This crisis is happening all over the world and unless we take it very serious we will lose a whole generation of our young. If that happens, even in a small way, what can be said of our future. Although sad and hard to view, we need to see this to shock our senses awake to the danger at hand. Thanks for sharing. Praying for your safety, strength and protection in the days ahead.

    BE ENCOURAGED! BE BLESSED!

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    • Your visits to my blogzine is always meaningful to me. Yes, this is a very sad, depressing issue and the
      problem is growing more. I am showing the one side of the coin, still I didn’t share the whole one.These
      people can barely fulfill their budget for foods, drug is a very fancy thing for them but this is the main point, imagine what sufferings has lead them to fade out themselves from reality by depending on drugs!! How many of us can understand the depth of the field? I wish there comes a point when these issues are really undertaken with great sensitivity.

      Like

  3. this is very remarkable work, I am happy that I am able to find your site, you’re images touch and moves me and I guess everybody who we’re able to see it, this issue is rampant to all countries who suffer poverty and hunger, this is also a wake up call to all concern, stable jobs, good governance are the tools to at least lessen this rampant problem who eradicate lives of people who suffer this kind of situation…. I am asking also u’re permission to reblogged this in my site and share this remarkable work in my page…. thank you and best regards….

    Like

    • The whole world is affected by this disease and sadly several giant group are making these drug business alive and makes it easier to give it in the hand of people who even earn hardly earn $10 a day/maximum.

      Like

  4. Dear Akash, once again you have snapped some awestruck pictures and came up with an intriguing subject. Substance abuse has taken an epidemic form in Bangladesh in past years, however it still tends to be a concealed social problem in our society. Culturally, most of us are often disgusted with the topic of drug addiction, hardly ever trying to give an eagle-eye on how it can drastically impact on any ordinary individual’s life . . .transforming him/her into a dependent, hopeless and helpless sufferer. How it affects their loved ones who powerlessly see them going astray. The worst part is seeing those innocent children getting involved in the consumption of such harmful substances. I hope one day our government will be able to prevent the illicit trafficking of drugs.

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  5. My dear friend Akash….once again your lens has captured the most vulnerable of society and shown us their desperate grasp on life. As others have said…it is a global problem with unscrupulous dealers making millions from the suffering of those most needing help. The images of the children are most disturbing; the thought of them is truly heart breaking. God bless you for reminding us that ..’There, but by the Grace of God, go I’. I wish there was more I could do…..Stay safe my friend.

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    • I would like to share this issue because this is not only serious in Bangladesh but to all countries who suffer poverty and hunger, it is also serve an awaken call for those concern.Thank you for your generous thoughts about my post – I am humbled.

      Like

  6. Your lens, as usual, has brilliantly captured the ever pervasive silent killing and the death-in-slow-motion around us. Correction or solution! Very difficult. Even global efforts appears to be defeated from the Americas to Europe and Asia. It is the human GREED, GREED and GREED and infected morality that has major role in perpetuating this issue, and many other such challenges. Let us appreciate all the small-and-beautiful that contributes positively in mitigating these heinous issues.
    Rezaul Haque

    Like

    • Until we wake up nothing is possible. Stable jobs and good governance are the tools that help to at least lessen this rampant problem that eradicates lives for all people who suffer this kind of situation.

      Like

  7. Very difficult to say like, well done or good job etc..heartbreaking photos . May Allah bless them ,you , us and all . Take care dear .

    Like

    • This issue is heartbreaking and I know how sensitive it is. Thanks for leaving your imprints on the blog, I sensibly thank you for expressing your comment on this serious issue.

      Like

  8. Reblogged this on Will Of Heart and commented:
    I would like to thank GMB Akash for allowing me to reblogged this post, I would like to share this issue because this is rampant not only in Bangladesh but to all countries who suffer poverty and hunger, it is also serve an awaken call for those concern. Stable jobs and good governance are the tools that help to at least lessen this rampant problem that eradicates lives for all people who suffer this kind of situation….

    Like

    • Wonderful to hear from you and thanks that you share it. of course you can share our ideas on crucial/development issues which is a one problem for one world we are living in.

      Like

  9. Clearly a once in a lifetime photo blog. Dark alley indeed. An alley which leads to an increasing darkness of hopelessness and helplessness.A space avoided by the rest of the world. What we do not know we need not feel guilty about……

    Shakti

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    • We are all one world, and it’s our responsibility to reach out to each other. & whatever is happening in the world we all has to be pay for this in one way or in another way. Peace and light.

      Like

  10. My soul weeps. Helpless and misunderstood. Victims. Without choice or capacity. All I can give is to say that for a brief moment they were seen. Thank you for being the lense.

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  11. Akash ! I have not come to your blog thinking you are in villages and not posting – only today I have come across plethora of your recent offerings.
    You have expressed the human angst in this series as humanly. I am tearful after going through your pics — sigh!
    I really want you to join my film project and be significant in the filming. More on email.

    Love you so much, dear friend. Am sooooo proud of the man you are !

    Like

    • Dear friend, I feel blessed to have your presence on my blog. Through photography I only jot down my heart’s language. Every click is important to me. I never know who might be there to see it and who might be absorbing it. But I know I have to show the hidden lights behind the curtain of the deprived world, a hidden light which may shine the world. These ‘Survivors’ teaches me that we have to fight through some bad days to earn the best days of our life!
      I love your blog and I have belief in your kind heart. We are connected, I welcome your thought on email. May your light leads others

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  12. Hello,
    I am a student at the New York Film Academy, I was wondering f I could use some of your work to present for my finals.
    It will be an honor for me to show and explain what your photographs do with such grace.
    I am the only one in my class that know a little part of your work.
    I would love to prove that there is an other world than Fashion photography. A reality that can be beautifully photograph and poetically expose, where a sensible soul will not be aggressed

    Like

    • Welcome you in this photography world. I am surrounded by some inventory of my life, sharing that is well worthy. I believe, An image that transcends borders, that transcend religions, that provoke us to step up and do something is an image of best endeavor. you can write to me at akashphoto@gmail.com exactly what you want to present for your presentation. & you can follow me on facebook page too. Thanks much!

      Like

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