Manikarnika Ghat at Varanasi, India is one of the oldest and sacred Ghats for Hindus and it is believed those who die and cremated here gets immediate liberation from the endless cycle of rebirths. The cremation process must be completed correctly or the soul will not find the afterlife. The family member of the deceased carry the body on a bamboo stretcher wrapped in white cloth with an orange drape covered with flowers and garlands. During the cremation ritual the bodies are immersed in the holy Ganges to cleanse them from their sins. The body is then dried and placed on the wood pyre for cremation. The elder male member of the family presides over the cremation ceremony and shaves his head as a sign of respect. It is believed by the people that the pyres at Manikarnika ghat burns day and night throughout the year.
Debasish Ghosh is a documentary photographer. He has been working on various projects for more than a decade. His much noted work on Bellandur lake pollution Bangalore, Karnataka, India was published worldwide. His pictures have been published by National Geographic in many books and on its web site. Awards: IPA- International Photography Awards -2016 - First Place in People Culture Category Project : “ The Last Journey : Manikarnika Ghat at Varanasi” Px3- Paris 2017 - Silver prize in Book / Documentary Category Project : Endless Coal Rush