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Hot As Hell : Why Jharia is burning| 26mins
Director: Paranjoy Guha Thakurta | Producer: Paranjoy Guha Thakurta in partnership with the Public Servic
Focus Years: 2006 | Country: India
Subject Tags: asia, environment, india
Quality Tags: Optimistic, Slow, Activating, Harmonizing
The documentary film series seeks to explain why underground fires – literally and metaphorically – are raging for so many years in and around the township of Jharia in Dhanbad district in the eastern Indian state of Jharkhand. At a literal level, tens of thousands of residents of the town are living on top of a veritable inferno. At a metaphorical level, there are powerful mafia organizations that rule over this region and exploit the underprivileged – by mining illegally, supervising organized pilferage, running extortion rackets and bagging lucrative contracts. Part One (1) "Why Jharia Is Burning" establishes why the Jharia coalfields in Dhanbad district are unique in the world and outlines the history of the area since coal mining began a century ago. This region not only has the most valuable coal available in India, it is the only part of the world where 70 underground fires are burning in a relatively small but densely populated geographical area. Many of the fires are a consequence of the unscientific ‘slaughter’ mining that has taken place over the decades.

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