Do Readers’ Contributions Help? They Did in Sawata’s life

Sawata's father died in Assam's detention camp. Your support made a difference in her life, she got back to school.

2 min read

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Creative inputs & Video Edit: Prashant Chauhan Camera: Athar Rather Producer: Zijah Sherwani

The Quint's Tridip K Mandal shot the documentary Diaries from a Detention Camp in September 2019, soon after Assam NRC was announced.

The final NRC left out more than 19 lakh people, and since its announcement, the pressing question has been: Will these 19 lakh people end up in detention camps?

He travelled to Goalpara in Assam to seek answers. There, he met 9-year-old Sawata Dey. Her father, Subrata Dey, was put in a detention camp in 2018 due to a mismatch in his name on his voter ID card. Declared a ‘foreigner’, he was arrested.

Within two months, Subrata lost his life in the detention camp. Sawata had believed her father would be released but one day, they brought home his dead body.

The Quint's Tridip K Mandal with Sawata and her mother, Kamini, in Goalpara, Assam. (September 2019)

(Photo: The Quint)


Sawata loves dancing and used to attend dance classes. However, when her father died, life came to a standstill. She longed for new clothes but nobody bought her anything new.

Sawata’s story that struck a chord with the audience, and they reached out to The Quint to bring back some joy in Sawata’s life. Soon, contributions poured in from across the world.

It's been four years since we brought you Sawata's voice. With your support, today Sawata has joined a new school, her fee has been paid by some generous readers of The Quint. She has even resumed dance classes with the support of the audience.

Sawata Dey ready for her dance performance at a function in her school.

(The Quint)

Sawata in her dancer pose.

(The Quint)

Sometimes journalism is about changing that one life.

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Topics:  NRC Assam   Assam NRC   NRC 

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