In this photograph we see an Indian street vendor selling nuts in Jaipur. Most seeds come from fruits that naturally free themselves from the shell, unlike nuts such as hazelnuts, chestnuts and acorns, which have hard shell walls and originate from a compound ovary. The issues of outsourcing jobs to India, has made India adapt to the night shift and this have influence on Indian workers' health.
Night is often associated with darkness to the fear of the unknown and in this photo essay by Kristian Bertel he has portrayed nighttime in India. As a photographer he experienced that many things take place in India at this time of the hour, but also that nighttime is naturally associated with the vulnerability of the sense of the sight.
Nighttime chaos and noise in India
As a photographer he was surprised that during the nighttime he still had to deal with noise, chaos, a lot of touts and bargain hard if you want to purchase something at one of the bazaars in Jaipur, India. Jaipur is known for being one of the first planned cities in the world and it is rectangular in shape so for the photographer it was easy to navigate in during the night. "- Life in India is very active and people work in the night as the street vendor portrayed in this photo essay. Photos taken at night are often more difficult to take and the light is illuminating the scene more than daytime photos. Actually the best time to take nighttime pictures may not be at night, but rather at dusk. At dusk, there is still some light in the sky", the photographer says.
It is estimated that the cost of these increased health issues, namely sleep disorders, heart disease and depression, could amount to $200bn for the Indian economy over the next 10 years if corrective action is not taken.
Moonlight and opportunities
As artificial lighting has improved, especially after the late night hours in the cities of India, night time activity has increased and become a significant part of the economy in most places, both in the cities of Delhi and Jaipur, where most of the photos in this photo essay are from. Many establishments in India, such as street food stall, bars, small stores, fast-food restaurants, gas stations, distribution facilities and small factories now operate twenty for hours a day or stay open as late as 1 or 2am. Even without artificial light, moonlight sometimes makes it possible to travel or work outdoors at night in India.
A street is a land-bound traffic structure that serves as the basis for vehicles and pedestrians primarily for the transport of people and their payloads from one place to another. Therefore, the connection between the two locations is ideally direct. Conveniently, the course of the road follows a hierarchy such as a road network and is also influenced by the shape of the terrain. The road extends mainly and appropriately in one dimension in length and mainly approaches the natural course of the terrain as seen at the Johari Bazar Rd in middle of Jaipur, provided that the radius of curvature of the road appropriate to the maximum vehicle size and speed envisaged allows a course close to the surface. Otherwise it is led through tunnels or over bridges. In width and depth the so-called foundation it can be adapted to the weight, quantity of traffic volume and degree of connectivity of the intended vehicles. Administratively, a road is a land transportation route. If you have to work in the evening and are very stressed about it, you can do a lot to still sleep well. It is good, for instance, to get used to a fixed ritual that helps you come down after work in the evenings. For instance, someone might read a few more pages in a book, watch television for half an hour or have a glass of tea. It is often easier to fall asleep than if someone closes the laptop and then brushes his teeth and goes to bed.
In this photograph people are walking on a road during the nightime in India. When someone is working in India it is also good to set fixed times for work in the evenings right from the start for instance, this can be the rule of breaking up at midnight at the latest. With such fixed boundaries, many can also work more relaxed in the evening. Those who just work in the evening until they are completely exhausted are generally no longer productive.
Photographing people in India
The photographer took some of his photos in the city of Jaipur, a city that is celebrated for its pinkish buildings in the old part of the city. Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan where colorful Jaipuri natives attired in traditional clothes can be seen together with sidewalk shops overflowing with pottery and dyed or sequined fabric, and streets packed with camel carts, cycle-rickshaws, and wandering cows. It was in the old part of Jaipur city that the photographer spend most of his time photographing people during the daytime as he has a passion for taking portraits of people in India. It was here where most of the sights he wanted to see during the day were placed full of appealing bazaars with colorful textiles and trinkets, bangles, steel utensils and copper ornaments and henna artists as well places to have snacks or tall glasses of lassi.
In the city of Jaipur, street vendors such as small tea stalls and popular food stalls along the public spaces such as university campuses, bus terminals and market places have a significant role to cater to the urban population. Street vendors are a source of food security, especially to the poorer section of the urban population. Street vending is significant portion of Jaipur's informal economy, an employment opportunity for better livelihoods of the urban poor.
Night portraits from Jaipur, India
When the night sets in India the orange light from the street lights takes over the scene. Night photography refers to photographs taken outdoors between dusk and dawn. "- Night photographers generally have a choice between using artificial light and using a long exposure, exposing the scene for seconds or minutes in order to give the camera sensor enough time to capture a usable image. And with the wide-aperture lenses and the ever-greater power of urban lights, night photography is increasingly possible using available light", the photographer says.
Photo essay portraited in Jaipur in India
The most famous landmark of Jaipur is the upward tapering Hawa Mahal also known as 'Palace of the Winds'. It was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawaj Pratap Singh. The striking construction served as an observation post for the numerous ladies of the court, who were not allowed to go among the common people, especially in the popular processions. You could see, hear and smell everything from the street, but could not be noticed from the outside due to the darkening construction. The facade of the show got its name from the refined air circulation, which always allowed a fresh breeze to flow through the rooms. The city palace, built in 1890, is surrounded by high walls between gardens and courtyards in the middle of the city center and is open to the public as the ''Maharaja Sawai Mansingh II Museum'. The following parts of the palace complex are part of the museum, Mubarak Mahal, Maharani's Palace, Diwan-i-Am and Diwan-i-Khas. Even today descendants of the ruling family live in part of the palace and on formal occasions family members walk through the large Tripolia Gate of the southern city wall in an elaborate procession.
The dark and relatively featureless lunar plains of the Moon is setting in the sky over India.
Night work, as at present practised, always causes fatigue and also, in many cases, neuroses to which the practice of rotation can add specific digestive disorders. Moreover, the mental load involved in a task and the ageing of the worker can constitute aggravating factors. It is recommended that night workers should not work more than eight hours daily on average, not including overtime.
Street vendors in India
In many Indian metropolitan areas such as Jaipur, hawkers, commonly referred to as vendors, are seen everywhere. They sell a wide range of goods such as fish, fruits, vegetables, clothes and books. In suburban areas, they go door to door, and in more commercial areas, they usually have stands or lay their goods on the ground. In the afternoon, many of them sell commercial goods in the more crowded parts of the cities, and at night, they sell juices, tea and snacks. The prices are lower than on shops and so attract people on low incomes. There are 10 million street vendors in India, with Mumbai accounting for 250,000, Delhi has 200,000, Kolkata, more than 150,000 and Ahmedabad, 100,000. Most of them are immigrants or laid-off workers, work for an average 10–12 hours a day and remain impoverished. Though the prevalent license-permit raj in Indian bureaucracy ended for most retailing in the 1990s, it continues in this trade. Inappropriate license ceiling in most cities, like Mumbai which has a ceiling 14,000 licenses, means more vendors hawk their goods illegally, which also makes them prone to the bribery and extortion culture under local police and municipal authories, besides harassment, heavy fines and sudden evictions. In Kolkata, the profession was a cognisable and non-bailable offense.
Health burdens for the night workers
Man is by nature a diurnal living being, his body functions are set to activity during the day and rest at night. Someone who works in shift or night shifts has to be active against the "inner clock". The adaptation of the biological body rhythms for instance sleep-wake rhythm or digestion is only partially successful even with many night shifts and is a burden for the organism. Often, physical as well as psychological and social stresses as well as unhealthy behaviors are added. Smoking, high coffee consumption, irregular and high-calorie diets are often said to help you get through your efforts better. Even regular exercise often falls by the wayside. For instance, an increased health risk for employees in shift and / or night work is scientifically proven. The risk is particularly high for permanent night work.
Common health problems
Sleep disorders are the most common among shift workers with night shifts. They often sleep shorter than day workers in India. The length of sleep is usually shorter with daytime sleep than with night sleep, and the sleep quality is also worse during the day. Gastrointestinal disorders can be found in addition to sleep problems, gastrointestinal problems are among the most common complaints among shift workers and night workers. These include for instance impaired appetite, digestive problems, heartburn or flatulence. In the long term, diseases such as chronic gastritis, intestinal inflammation or stomach ulcers can develop. Dietary behavior plays an important role during shift and night shifts. For instance, unbalanced and high-calorie meals can lead to problems such as malnutrition and overweight. Cardiovascular problems are also seen in some cases when they arise, various health risk factors interact that are common during shift or night work, for instance time pressure, irregular sleep times, problems in the private sphere, poor nutrition, lack of exercise and so on. Therefore, regular occupational medical examinations are important for the early detection of health problems. Social problems have also an impact and the changing working hours are a challenge for a functioning social and family life in India. It is often difficult to find a rhythm that makes it possible to maintain social contacts and enjoy a free time together with family or friends. In the case of a partnership between two working partners, there is an additional coordination effort. Psychological problems can also occur where the common symptoms of shift workers and night workers include restlessness, nervousness, sexual problems and depression.
A night worker is someone who normally works at least three hours at night. Nighttime is between 11pm and 6am, although workers and employers may agree to vary this. When a night worker's work involves special hazards or heavy physical or mental strain, there is an absolute limit of eight hours on the worker's working time each day.
When do we speak of shift or night work?
Statutory provisions on shift work can be found in the working hours and shift work occurs when several employees or work groups take turns in one workplace. A night worker is someone who works regularly or at least three hours during the night from 10pm to 5am for at least 48 nights in the calendar year. The usual daily and weekly working and rest times also apply to night workers and the weekly rest periods are 36 hours, the daily rest periods are eleven hours. If people are ready to work at night, employees are entitled to additional rest periods under certain conditions. In the case of shift work, a shift plan is required by law, in which certain regulations must be observed, including the works council has the right to participate. In the case of fully continuous shift work and shift work takes place around the clock, seven days a week, the shift plan must be submitted to the labor inspectorate.
Health protection measures
Companies can make a significant contribution to reducing the possible negative effects of shift or night work on the health of employees and this should keep the workforce and avoid sick leave. Important areas are on the one hand the appropriate design of shift plans and working conditions, on the other hand the promotion of health-promoting behavior of the employees. Health-promoting and socially compatible design of shift plans and these shift systems that rotate briefly forward for instance two early, two late and two night shifts are less harmful to health than long-rotating shift systems for instance weekly change of shift type. Offer of regular occupational medical examinations and employees in India are entitled to free occupational medical examinations of their state of health, before starting night work and afterwards at regular intervals, whereby employers must ensure that an examination is possible. The health check can be carried out by an occupational health professional commissioned by the company. With nutrition for night workers the company is supposed to provide hot and easily digestible meals during the night shift.
Nocturnal shift workers
Information and education should also be provide knowledge about how a healthy lifestyle should be maintained such as regular exercise, healthy eating, no smoking, coping with stress can reduce the burden of shift or night work. Company health promotion could also be an idea and with the help of a company health promotion project, particularly stressful and health-damaging factors can be identified and solutions worked out. Many people work when most are enjoying their restful sleep and there are night shifts in a wide variety of areas, be it in healthcare or in industry. The time difference between work and sleep can be accompanied by physical complaints such as gastrointestinal problems, poor appetite, fatigue and sleep problems are associated. The internal clock of the person who is diurnally active is subject to a 24-hour day-night rhythm that cannot be reprogrammed. This so-called Circadian rhythm causes certain organs such as the stomach, intestines, liver and bile are less active at night. While the photographer has been traveling in India he has covered topics that relate to the Indian people such as environmental issues that are reflected with a humanitarian view in his photographs.
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More photographs from India
Humanitarian photography that also concerns child rights can be seen in more of his photos on Kristian Bertel | Photography on Facebook with stories from India. In the slideshow below, which also appears on the photographer's website you can moreover see a range of photos from India collected in a gallery that are representing India.
See the slideshow | press here