“I am passionate about anything that can remotely inspire me to be a happy person,” comments Dnyaneshwar Mulay, a former diplomat who has worked with the Indian Foreign Services for about 35 years and is currently serving as a member of the National Human Rights Commission. He also served as the High Commissioner of India to Male, Maldives, from 2009-2013.
Over the course of his stay in the country, Mulay—an avid photographer—managed to capture instances of civilian and military life as witnessed in the island country. A few of these images are now on display at the Art Gallery of Civil Services Officers' Institute, Chanakyapuri. Titled, ‘Maldives: Not Just Beaches’, this photography exhibition—it was inaugurated on July 25—will conclude on August 8 and is open to the public.
The mention of Maldives usually paints a scenic picture in our minds. Mulay—he was posted in the Maldives a year after the country introduced its sixth and new Constitution (in 2008)—was aware of the picturesque nation. He, however, decided to go beyond this imagery. “What people know about Maldives is the sand, sun, and the sea. I thought we should try to convey something that we have understood about the country—the local life and the culture,” he says. The simple yet evocative photographs reflect the day-to-day instances that celebrate monotony.