Women Against Supremacy in an Arab Trading Village

“We are all connected on this wire—that is why we are here,” Adibul Hasan, 58, said at the Ortafo Fair Trade Market, which he has been working in since he was a teenager.

In this temporary encampment, the families—some with green-colored shawls covering their faces—and the factory workers, some in traditional Indian dress, shared the struggle to survive: to find enough to eat, to send their children to school and perhaps to work with their hands—for their families.

Mr. Hasan lives in a small shanty community with almost no electricity or running water. Most of the houses here are made of khadi, a traditional, handwoven fabric, purchased cheaply. In the market, dozens of laborers straggle in every morning, many with baskets on their heads, carrying groceries and clothes to the stalls.

They stand in their booths, waiting for customers. One girl counts her things: As a human rights activist, she is responsible for counting life rights abuses, like forced labor, against owners and workers in the worst industries. Several of her friends help her.

“There are some savings, but we have to sell everything,” she said. “Families, villages, cities: they need us. We don’t see any end.”

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