A distinguished looking Sadhu on the Ghats of Varanasi with his trident, representing the Hindu trinity of Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu.
I took this picture just two hours after arriving in Varanasi, but it was to be my last in the City. I was arrested by a policeman for taking it. I protested that I had asked the Sadhu’s permission, but he barked back that “Sadhu is not the boss of Varanasi – I am the boss”. After barking at me a little longer about stealing Hindu culture, threatening me with prison and taking my camera he got to the point. For 500 rupees (~$10) there would be no problem.
What to do? Thinking it was a pretty clear case of corruption I suggested we go to the police station. “How much you want to pay? 300?” he replied. But a funny thing happened on the way to the station. The police man foolishly decided he needed to go to the toilet and equally foolishly I decided to get away. But with good timing, some neat footwork and the help of the maze-like streets of the old city I escaped. The cost for me though was to avoid the city’s principle attractions for my rest of my stay here. :-(
Varanasi used to be called Benares, and for a while I decided to rename it “VeryNasty”. But it really is one of the most magical places on earth so I won’t let this colour my view of the place. Next time I will just try to keep a low profile.
Critiques | Translate
clodreno (0) 2006-03-24 15:18
hey.. nice to see you went to India.. Beautiful face , lovely colors you caught here.
I alsolove the way he looks at you..
Very nice John...
Floydian (30970) 2006-03-24 15:19
Great shot you got here. Very crisp and bright colours, with great light. The strong orange colour does it all.
rozy975 (3047) 2006-03-24 15:25
This is a very good compo with good light. Interesting to hear that you had problem to take photos in Varanasi. I didn't. Colors are perfect in this photo. Well done!
itaca (293) 2006-03-24 15:40
I love this photo
Mice colour and light.
Congratulations for the photo
rosaline (0) 2006-03-24 15:43
A great photo with good impact and colour. The exposure is excellent and the framing good. The expression, not too friendly it seems, adds good emotion to the scene. Well done.
Zumosol (520) 2006-03-24 17:44
Una foto estupenda,el color naranja destaca sobre el fondo de una manera brillante,el desenfoque es tambien estupendo haciendo de ello un buen retrato.Felicidades!!
tjanze (5674) 2006-03-25 1:51
Beautiful sharp portrait.Colors are amazing.Good idea to take the stick on photo too.
sohrab (7439) 2006-03-26 23:35
actually BANARAS is still called banaras..
banaras is the portion that includes the ghats, the old city is still calles kashi(kashi is infact the oldest name of all 3) it's the main city new new city that is called varanasi..
if you go from varanasi cant station to mughalsarai junction by train the train usually (not the superfast or express trains but passenger) stops at a station called kashi very close to the bridge and right next to the old city near raj ghat..
elihesamian (26149) 2006-03-27 13:26
Indeed a great captured you did,excellent sharpness and colors with great details,too,
the expression of the man is a strong point for the shot,very well controlled the light and nicely done,Thanks John,
muratd (5072) 2006-04-06 18:05
Hello.So good. Everything is exelant. Tcompo and colours is impressive. Thank you.
rbcy1974 (20758) 2006-04-10 7:48
Really nice face, very attemtive
jdurbas (69) 2006-05-31 11:19
hello John good to see You again :0
well i love varanasi, it's amazing place as You wrote, also i didn't have any problems with taking photos, i know that's prohibitet to taking photos on Marikarnika ghat ;)
and see you
scalerman (26900) 2006-08-28 15:32
sharp beyon measure. In a land of a billion, I recognize this guy from the dashwashwamedh ghtats. perfect focus.
- Copyright: John Hopkins (johnhopkins) (866)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2005-11-19
- Categories: Daily Life
- Camera: Canon EOS 350D, Canon EF 135 f/2L USM
- Exposure: f/2.8, 1/4000 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Theme(s): Hinduism [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2006-03-24 15:14