Jeremy Hutchison

Human Rickshaw, 2011

A tourist pays a human rickshaw driver to ferry him around Chaplin Square, Kolkata. He films the driver from the comfort of his seat. When they return to the start, tourist and driver switch place and the journey begins again.

A human rickshaw is a mode of transport in which a runner pulls passengers in a two-wheeled cart. Introduced to India during Britain's colonial Raj, this is the practice of human beings pulling human beings, like cattle. The drivers of these rickshaws are Dalits. Meaning 'oppressed', Dalit is the self-chosen political name of peoples which the caste system considers untouchable. Despite a ban being placed on this profession, the human rickshaw is still a common mode of transport in Kolkata.