Mukesh Rajak All my life, I have had to suffer the consequences of being born a Dalit. But today, I am respected in my community despite this. Everything changed since I started reporting on stories from my area. I can walk into any temple. Big people also say ‘hi’ and approach me.
I work with an NGO called the People’s Institute for Development and Training, and this is how I came across IndiaUnheard. I enjoy being a journalist because it allows me to be a voice for my people. My biggest challenge is getting people to be interested, because everyone has a bad impression about the media and reporters who are bought by those who don’t want to be exposed. So people don’t trust me, but at the same time I meet villagers who ask me to cover their stories because they want something to be done.
I’m a keen learner – I want to be able to learn as much as I can. I completed my high school education through sponsorship because I am determined to continue and do a degree. Before joining VV, I had never held a camera but now it is the main tool in my work. Soon, I will buy a laptop and continue learning.