The Photographer's Diary 
Tibetan Hunger Strike
 
Photo by Eugene LouieSeventy-year-old Mrs. Palzom is the only woman member of the hunger strike team. Many of her friends have come to New Delhi in complete support of her decision to begin and remain on her fast. I get the sense her supporters want the protester's  sacrifice to be pure. As I ease my way into these brave people's lives I realize I must allow them to get used to me, and of course my ever present camera. Usually, I stop photographing when people begin mugging for my camera back in the United States. Here, however, it is fun to watch Mrs. Palzom's women friends egging her on, teasing her and telling her she is a "movie star."
 
Photo by Eugene LouieDuring my first week in India,  I watched as streams of supporters poured into the strikerís tent daily. They usually present "Katas" (scarfs) as a sign of respect. Karma Sichoe, at 25, is the youngest of the group and he is a very artistic "Tanka" painter (Tanka is a distinct traditional Tibetan painting style). I believe he is either a student or teacher at the Tibetan school of the Performing Arts in Dharamsala.  He is receiving a scarf as a gift of respect from a nun.  In the center of the small tent sits a kitchen size table that supports pictures of the Dalai Lama, Gandhi and other offerings and objects of prayer.
 
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