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The Unfortunate Fate Of Segambut Dalam :: A Village Soon to be Demolished

The Unfortunate Fate Of Segambut Dalam :: A Village Soon to be Demolished

By Razlan Yusof

A lot of people ask me, “Why do you take pictures?”

To be honest, I can’t write that well, so I take pictures instead. I let my pictures do the talking. I always liked telling a story through my photographs. I want people to see what I see through my camera.

Segambut Dalam is a village that will soon disappear and be replaced by huge condominiums. It’s sad to know that the people living in this area will be forced to move out of their homes. Some of them have been living here for more than 20 years, some even longer. They have so many stories to be shared. And that’s my job as a photographer: Tell the world what is happening here.

Meet Kak Sinta & Kak Lis. (Kak means older sister and in Malaysian culture, we tend to call older ladies Kak if we don’t know them personally). They were two very friendly ladies.

I will always remember the moment I met them. Kak Sinta owns a small food stall and says,“As long as I make MYR20 (5USD) a day, I will be happy.” I thought to myself. Man, that’s the same amount I usually spend a day for food and coffee.

The upcoming development project which will demolish these people’s home.

“The rich literally looking down on the poor.”

As you can see in this picture, the village is surrounded by towering condominiums. The rich look down at these people, seeing ants from their point of view.

I got invited to ceremony called the “Cukur Jambul.” It’s a ceremony for newborn babies’ first haircuts, done in accordance with Malay tradition. Even though I’ve lived in Malaysia for my entire life, I have never heard of such ceremony because my family does not practice this. It was an honor to be invited to an event like this and, again, I don’t know anyone here personally. I was there photographing the people and they invited me to see the ceremony.

The man in the middle is the father of the newborn baby. He walked around the people, carrying his child. There were people playing the “Kompang,” which is a traditional Malay instrument typically used for events like weddings as well.

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