A journey to the wettest place on earth

Updated On Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST
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Aasheesh Sharma and photographer Raj K Raj journeyed to Mawsynram, a cluster of hamlets in Meghalaya – now the wettest place in the world (sorry, it isn’t Cherrapunji!). They got drenched, but returned with an extraordinary story. Home and dry: A girl in Mawsynram. The locals don’t bother much with umbrellas. They swear by the knup, an innovative hands-free rain shield that lets them work in the fields, dig roads and carry out everyday chores without having to grip an umbrella pipe. The rim of the shield looks like an inverted tear drop. A knup extends behind the head and also keeps the rain off the knees.
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

Aasheesh Sharma and photographer Raj K Raj journeyed to Mawsynram, a cluster of hamlets in Meghalaya – now the wettest place in the world (sorry, it isn’t Cherrapunji!). They got drenched, but returned with an extraordinary story. Home and dry: A girl in Mawsynram. The locals don’t bother much with umbrellas. They swear by the knup, an innovative hands-free rain shield that lets them work in the fields, dig roads and carry out everyday chores without having to grip an umbrella pipe. The rim of the shield looks like an inverted tear drop. A knup extends behind the head and also keeps the rain off the knees.

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Aiming for a windfall: A darts game in progress in a misty maidan on the outskirts of Cherrapunji. It is a sort of target practice for Teer, also known as archery gambling, one of the most popular leisure pursuits in Meghalaya, apart from fishing. Teer is legal in Shillong. Teer counters mushroom in the bylanes of Shillong’s Police Bazaar and other busy marketplaces. A news report on August 10 in The Shillong Times said the government was contemplating modernising the age-old gambling practice associated with archery, with the help of a Scotland-based micro gaming company. Other popular pursuits with a high booty include fishing competitions and bull fights. (Photo Raj K. Raj)
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

Aiming for a windfall: A darts game in progress in a misty maidan on the outskirts of Cherrapunji. It is a sort of target practice for Teer, also known as archery gambling, one of the most popular leisure pursuits in Meghalaya, apart from fishing. Teer is legal in Shillong. Teer counters mushroom in the bylanes of Shillong’s Police Bazaar and other busy marketplaces. A news report on August 10 in The Shillong Times said the government was contemplating modernising the age-old gambling practice associated with archery, with the help of a Scotland-based micro gaming company. Other popular pursuits with a high booty include fishing competitions and bull fights. (Photo Raj K. Raj)

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A playground of mist: One of the most enjoyable pursuits in an area that gets as much rain in one day as big Indian cities get in a year is to kick a football around. Like the rest of the states in north-east India, the people of Meghalaya are fanatical about football. The popularity of the game is as evident in the smokey pubs of state capital Shillong (where TVs seem preset to a sports channel telecasting a game), as it is in the rural playgrounds of remote Mawsynram. It helps that two clubs from Meghalaya: Shillong Lajong and Rangdajiad United participate in the national league. (Photo Raj K. Raj)
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

A playground of mist: One of the most enjoyable pursuits in an area that gets as much rain in one day as big Indian cities get in a year is to kick a football around. Like the rest of the states in north-east India, the people of Meghalaya are fanatical about football. The popularity of the game is as evident in the smokey pubs of state capital Shillong (where TVs seem preset to a sports channel telecasting a game), as it is in the rural playgrounds of remote Mawsynram. It helps that two clubs from Meghalaya: Shillong Lajong and Rangdajiad United participate in the national league. (Photo Raj K. Raj)

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Moss’s child: An infant in Mawsynram. The Khasis are a matrilineal society, in which inheritance passes to the youngest daughter and the children take the mother’s name. (Photo Raj K. Raj)
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

Moss’s child: An infant in Mawsynram. The Khasis are a matrilineal society, in which inheritance passes to the youngest daughter and the children take the mother’s name. (Photo Raj K. Raj)

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Fall-proof: A worker in Mawsynram. The locals don’t bother much with umbrellas. They swear by the knup, an innovative hands-free rain shield that lets them work in the fields, dig roads and carry out everyday chores without having to grip an umbrella pipe. The rim of the shield looks like an inverted tear drop. A knup extends behind the head and also keeps the rain off the knees. (Photo Raj K. Raj)
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

Fall-proof: A worker in Mawsynram. The locals don’t bother much with umbrellas. They swear by the knup, an innovative hands-free rain shield that lets them work in the fields, dig roads and carry out everyday chores without having to grip an umbrella pipe. The rim of the shield looks like an inverted tear drop. A knup extends behind the head and also keeps the rain off the knees. (Photo Raj K. Raj)

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It’s raining umbrellas: The scene at the weekly market in Mawsynram, the wettest place on earth. Since tourists have dropped to a trickle, umbrella sales are sluggish, says Bibel Rani, an umbrella retailer. (Photo Raj K. Raj)
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

It’s raining umbrellas: The scene at the weekly market in Mawsynram, the wettest place on earth. Since tourists have dropped to a trickle, umbrella sales are sluggish, says Bibel Rani, an umbrella retailer. (Photo Raj K. Raj)

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Mist Call: a businessman from Shillong enjoys the view at Mawsynram, the wettest place in the world. (Photo Raj K. Raj)
Updated on Apr 22, 2015 03:06 PM IST

Mist Call: a businessman from Shillong enjoys the view at Mawsynram, the wettest place in the world. (Photo Raj K. Raj)

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