A brick kiln owner who shot the picture of an elephant calf on fire as it flees a mob with its mother in West Bengal won the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award, given by a conservation nonprofit on Sunday.
The photograph, “Hell is Here” by Biplab Hazra, was shot in Bankura district and shows what is “routine” in the area and other states like Assam, Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Tamil Nadu, the Mumbai-based Sanctuary Nature Foundation said in a release. The foundation gives the Sanctuary Wildlife Photography Awards annually.
Hazra, who owns a brick making company in West Bengal’s Bishnupur, does wildlife photography as well, and wants to bring awareness in how people look at nature and conservation, the Sanctuary Nature Foundation told Scroll.in.
Another photograph, showing a lifeless shark ray inside a crate at Mangaluru port, won the award in the “young category”. The picture was shot by 20-year-old engineering student Vishruth Cavale, who travels “at least thrice a month to forests to photograph its beauty and also to draw attention to the various atrocities”, the foundation said.
The organisation said it got over 5,000 entries from across Asia. Among the jury were several wildlife and conservation photographers including Sanctuary Asia editor Bittu Sahgal and National Geographic photographer Steve Winter.
Here’s a look at the winners across three main categories (“Art in Nature”, “Conservation Photography” and “Creatures Great and Small”) and four categories for young photographers (“Art in Nature”, “Conservation Photography”, “Creatures Great and Small” and “Nature in Urbania”).