IN THE LIGHT OF A FAR-AWAY WORLD: the Bangladeshi struggle in Rome
In January 2008 a new season of political fights started for the Bangladeshi immigrants in Rome. Leaded by the Bangladeshi Dhuumcatu association of Rome, the Bangladeshi people came out with several demonstrations and a five days and nights Hunger and Thirst Strike attended by over 1000 Bangladeshi in ancient San Giovanni's Square. The goal: getting the Residence Permit to work legally in Italy and denouncing the work abuse for the illegal immigrants. From January 2008 for six months I followed the Bangladeshi: in their demonstrations, squatting buildings to give home to homeless immigrants, in the Roman neighbourhood where their community lives, in their houses. One result arrives in the months later the Strike: a Temporary Humanitarian Residence Permit by the Ministry of Interior. A police receipt is the victory: it blocks for one year the immigrants expulsion, but it is not a full to stay permit.
"I think I shall stop, startled if ever we meet, after our next birth, walking in the light of a far-away world.."
Exposed to police and under a total media indifference, the Bangladeshi struggle seems to me as a sign of our time: if in the past century the Working Class fighted for their rights, today the European scenario is changing and now are the immigrants looking for doing their voice heard by their new goverments. This work is a statement about this, but also about the struggling will of a community, and in my eyes of anyone wherever looking for their rights, fighting 'in the light of a far-away world', as a line from a poetry of the Nobel prize Bangladeshi writer Rabindranath Tagore (from The Fugitive, 1921).
He spoke about the girl he loved, wondering if they will ever meet again in another life. For me he speaks about his people too, fighting bravely under the light of a far-away continent.