Suratgarh is one of the nine tehsils of district Sri Ganganagar of Rajasthan. The northern end this district shares border with Indian state of Punjab and the western limit is an international border with Punjab of Pakistan. This proximity with Punjab explains the presence of significant Punjabi population and culture in Sri Ganganagar, especially in northern areas and so popularly makes it known as ‘Punjab of Rajasthan’. In fact some notable people of Punjabi ethnicity like Colonel Avtar Singh Cheema, conqueror of Mount Everest and ‘Gazal King’ Jagjit Singh hail from Sri Ganganagar. But as you move to south a shift from Punjabi to Rajasthani culture could be clearly noticed, particularly with camels and sand dunes drawing your attention. Some decades ago, as mentioned by locals, the area was more desolated and had more sand dunes than at the present time. Indira Gandhi canal has turned the whole district much greener than other parts of Thar desert accountable to make it known as ‘Bread basket of Rajasthan’. We visited some deserted areas of Suratgarh and our observation says that this region could be referred as first conspicuous beginning of Thar desert from northern side. We started our journey from Delhi, traversing through Rohtak, Hisar, Sirsa and Hanumangarh.
Simmering Voices is our cumulative effort to document and record pictorially the lived experiences of multitudes, and to collate their lives through their expressions of their lived realities.