*Times of India : "Snapshots of history: Global Wikipedia photo contest sending Indians scouting for rare monuments"* http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Snapshots-of-history-Global-Wikipedia-photo-contest-sending-Indians-scouting-for-rare-monuments/articleshow/23268216.cms
On the pretext of a picnic, Gurgaon-based *Anupam Ganguly* recently took his family out to a place called Gandhak Ki Baoli. The journey to this medieval stepwell near Qutub Minar involved taking Google map printouts, wading through a gridlock of slums, asking several apprehensive locals for directions and assuring them that he wasn't part of an election campaign. Over the past few months, Ganguly's wife has tolerated many such "picnics" only because he has a legitimate reason. "I intend to explore unknown monuments," says the business analyst, who has already submitted close to 1,400 pictures for a contest called 'Wiki Loves Monuments'. WLM is the biggest global photo contest around monuments organized by Wikimedia chapters and groups annually. People are invited to upload images of monuments under a free licence for use on Wikipedia. This year, with over 1,300 candidates and 10,000 photos, India ranks eighth in terms of the number of entries submitted. "You need not be a professional photographer to participate , just someone who travels and takes pictures," says Mumbai-based *Karthik Nadar*, secretary of the Wikimedia India chapter. "Uploading these photos can help Wikipedia," he adds. Last year, in fact, it was a beautiful photograph of the rear end of Taj Mahal taken on a cellphone that won Delhibased schoolteacher *Narender Kumar Gautam* the sixth prize in the international contest. "I wanted to capture a rare angle of the Taj Mahal," says Gautam, who received a cash prize of Rs 20,000, a calendar and a certificate for his only submission. "It has increased my confidence and inspired me to do better," says Gautam, who feels elated when friends recognize his photo online. However, the prize is only a small part of the motivation. "Pictures tell a story beyond words," says Delhi's *Nupur Rawal*, who submitted photos of monuments last year to help people in other countries connect with India in a unique way. "For instance, if a Japanese newspaper wants to write about Indian history, they can go ahead and use my images because photos on Wikipedia have a Creative Commons licence. This means they can be used freely," says Rawal. Besides, the pursuit of rare slices of Indian history has led people like Delhi-based *Ranjit Kumar* to explore the nooks of Chandni Chowk. "Everyone has seen India Gate but very few outsiders have seen Ghalib Ki Haveli. I am just trying to put a place that I love online," says Kumar. On the other hand, Ganguly, who can now rattle off facts about little-known structures such as Jamali Kamali mosque and Rajaon ki Baoli in Mehrauli, has now developed an appreciation for Mughal architecture. He seeks out documentaries on Indian history. After the WLM contest closes on September 30, a jury of photographers and Wikipedians will shortlist 10 photos for the international contest. Ganguly, who was in the top 50 last year, says, "I want to be in the top 20 this time." This means a few more family picnics. Regards Tinu Cherian pr...@wikimedia.in Important Note : Non-commercial reproduction for informative purposes only. The publisher ( Times of India ) of the above news article owns the copyrights of the article / content. All copyrights are duly acknowledged.
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