The lives of over 100,000 people living in and around the Loktak Lake are economically, socially, and culturally linked to the lake. The lake supports a rich biodiversity of flora and fauna and is home to the Meitei tribes. This unique wetland is considered one of the most productive ecosystems in the world, making it a wetland of international importance. Development and regional conflict have endangered Loktak, threatening the livelihoods and identity of the Meiteis. Portraits of Resilience takes viewers up close to nine individuals to explore the relationship between the people and the lake as well as their fight for survival and self-identity. It gives a glimpse of how the lake intrinsically influences the existence of these individuals.
Kombirei Devi Khwairakpam, 65. Thanga Tongbram Leikai, Manipur
Kombirei Devi Khwairakpam, a retired fisherwoman who now spends part of her time weaving nylon-fishing nets. Change in water level and fish biodiversity in the lake after the construction of the Ithai Dam has forced fisherfolks to abandon traditional fishing technique and adopt the use of nylon fishing net. Women continue using traditional methods, thereby spending extended hours fishing compared to men. This not only impacts their health but also the time they spend tending their families.