Call for entries | Photo story contest

Life Under Lockdown: Visual Stories from the hills

The shocks from the COVID-19 pandemic has hit everyone globally and disrupted the lives of all. For the mountain communities in the Indian Himalayan Region (IHR) it has added another layer of vulnerability to the fragile economic and social ecosystems of the IHR.  These issues are compounded by climate change vulnerabilities which impact all sectors. Despite these uncertainties, inspiring stories of community resilience have emerged from our hills and mountains showcasing the immense adaptability of our mountain communities in the face of crises. These local stories of resilience have essential learnings and unique insights on survival and sustainability that are universally relevant, but often go unnoticed.

Storytelling forms the very fabric of our lives in the Himalayas. Therefore, this photo project titled ‘Life Under Lockdown: Visual Stories from the hills’ is an attempt to create knowledge though documenting, visualizing and contextualizing the experiences of local communities in the IHR during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

About the Contest

  • Each participant may submit up to a maximum of 1 story for the competition. The minimum word limit for the story is 300 words and maximum limit is 500 words. Each story must contain minimum 5 photos, maximum 10 photos.
  • Deadline: 15th October 2020
  • The awards are: 1st Prize – Rs 10k, 2nd Prize – Rs 7k, 3rd Prize – Rs 5k.
  • Stories will be accepted in English only.
  • All submissions should have a short bio of the photographer [max 150 words].
  • The photo(s) must be submitted as a high-resolution JPEG, at least 2MB in size.
  • Submitted photos must be original, created and/or taken by the contestant - no copyrighted images may be used.
  • Images should not have watermarks.
  • Mobile phone photography is allowed.
  • Documentary genre is preferred.

About the participant

  • This competition is not limited to professional photographers.
  • There is no age limit to enter the contest.
  • Must be a domicile or currently residing in one of the IHR states: States of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, West Bengal (Darjeeling and Kalimpong Districts only), Assam (Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao Districts only), Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Tripura and the Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh.

Terms & Conditions

  • IMI reserves the right to assess and disregard any submitted photo at its discretion.
  • By submitting their photos to IMI, participants agree to grant IMI free of charge the right to use the photo in any manner and media, including without limitation, the right to publish, adapt, distribute, copy, display or translate in printed or electronic media even if they are not the winning entries. The copyrights shall remain vested with the photographer of the image.
  • The photographer will be duly credited with mention of their full name wherever their photos are used.
  • Submissions will not be accepted once the deadline lapses.
  • The winners of the competition will be notified by e-mail. If an entrant is unable to be contacted after reasonable attempts have been made to do so, IMI reserves the right to offer the prize to the next best entry.
  • The results and the winners will be announced on IMI’s social media – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Website.
  • Photos that have won previous awards may be submitted again.

How to enter

Submissions must be sent to: by 15th October 2020 with the following information:

  • Name:
  • Town/City/State:
  • Email id:
  • Contact no:
  • Social media handles:

*Please read ‘About the contest' and T&C to make sure you are adhering to the rules.