KOCHI: The flood had unleashed an unprecedented devastation and caused severe economic damage to the state. When it was flooding, it seemed like the whole of Kerala would drown under the apocalyptic deluge. However, Keralites displayed unmatched determination and valour to bounce back. There were heartwarming stories of resilience, grit and unity as Keralites took on themselves the responsibility of rescuing the flood victims and helping them to rebuild lives.
Now, Disc foundation and E-safe CEO Mohammed Mustafa and photojournalist Jamal Panambadu have launched a mammoth mission to document the enormity of the flood and create an archive so future generations can use it in time of crisis. Disaster Documentation foundation of India, I for India Green Army, Photomuse, Kerala Photography Education Council, BKV Foundation and Light Magic School of Photography have come forward to partner with the project.
“At the hour of crisis, the people of Kerala stood united showing unmatched compassion for fellow beings, courage and composure to tide over the devastation unleashed by the deluge. Each person turned into a control room, shouldering the challenge of rescue operations putting life to danger. The resilience shown by Keralites should be shared with the world so that people can learn from our experience and prepare themselves to face disasters. We feel each and every story related to the flood devastation, relief, rescue and rebuilding should be documented for future generations,” said project director Mohammed Mustafa.
The project aims to create a well-documented detailed flood archive with one million stories, videos and photographs that provide details regarding the amount of rainfall received in each district, how much the water level rose, the gravity of the devastation in each area and what were the new models of rescue operation experimented, he said.
People from all walks of life, including fishermen who brought their fishing boats to the flood-affected areas and saved thousands, Facebook and WhatsApp groups that coordinated the rescue operations, media, police, Fire and Rescue personnel, defence forces, the people who collected relief material and delivered it to the victims, should share their experience with the archive, said Kerala Photo Education Council director Nandakumar Mudadi.
“Photographers, cartoonists, journalists, writers, officers and voluntary organisations that participated in the rescue operations can contribute by sharing their experience with pictures and video footage. We are envisaging an archive with one million stories. This will provide each one among us to be part of a noble initiative which may grab a place in the Guinness Book of World Records,” said I for India Green Army state coordinator Jamal Panambadu.