Bhartiya Patita Uddhar Sabha was set up in 1984 for the rehabilitation, settlement and support of sex-workers and their children; to provide them improved social status and bring them into the national Indian main-stream. The Sabha is running two Child Development & Care Centres (Balvidya Niketans) for the children of prostitutes, destitutes, and widows at Varanasi and Allahabad. At present about 140 children are studying in these schools. Over 310 children of sex-workers have been sponsored by the Sabha for admission in the Village Cottage Home of the Delhi Government.
The students of Balvidya Niketans are given free education from nursery to the 5th standards. They are provided with school uniforms, books/copies, mid-day meals, medical facilities etc.
I created this photo essay in Allahabad branch of Balvidya Niketan, where at present about 40 children are studying; among them about 12 are children of sex workers. I wished to see the nature, behavior and psychology of these children. Many organizations provide free education and child care to poor but Sabha is different; in this school, senior students love, care and educate the younger students. They are talented, obedient and well-mannered students. At the end, a group of children asked me “when will you visit again? Please visit again.” I not only photographed but also taught some paper art to children that day.