“They are ashamed to talk about their experiences”

As a day laborer Basav earned on the day the equivalent of about three euros. To be able to the dowry of his daughter after the wedding to pay, have sold, both he and his wife and son one of her kidneys.

What sounds like an unusual measure, in India is among the poor population are not uncommon. People in desperate need of money, earn it with your own organs. The photographer Gonçalo Fonseca las two years ago, an article about the organ trade in India and wanted to know more about it. For several months he researched until he eventually travelled in the South Asian country. In other countries such as the Philippines and Brazil, the practice is common.

Since 1994, the Indian government is trying to regulate the Transplantation of organs the law. For example, a panel was used from experts to approve each withdrawal and assignment. However, even these experts cannot prove that often clearly whether a donation is legal – the illegal trade is not yet stopped.

Who sold his kidney?

According to Fonseca, there are often day laborers, fishermen, farmers – mostly people who have no fixed income and quickly a large amount of money need. The photographer met people who have lost due to a Tsunami, all of their possessions, a woman who can’t pay would have their hospital bills different, but also a man who mortgaged his house to buy an Organ.

According to media reports, every year, more than 1,000 kidneys from India to be sold in other countries. Exactly statements can, however, due to lack of verified sources, not to be taken. A high estimated number of undetected cases is very likely. Because the demand is high: In the year 2016 have been carried out worldwide, according to estimates from the Global Observatory on Donation and Transplantation of approximately 136,000 transplants. Of these, 90,000 of kidney donations that came from Living or deceased, were almost.

In the state of Chennai, it took several months to Fonseca, people found, he researched alone at first. He went to places and in the district, about which he had read in newspaper articles, spoke with many of the people he asked Concerned. In West Bengal, he got help from a local NGO.

Less money than promised to receive

20 Affected the photographer made on his journey to locate. Even if most of them had given her kidney voluntarily, they were taken advantage of. “The traders use unscrupulous Tricks to convince people to sell their organs,” says the photographer. “They claim, for example, that your kidney nachwachse or promise you a lot more money than you actually give.”

How much money people received for their body, was different. On average, the price for the 20 people who met Fonseca, at 1250 Euro. Many had been promised by the agents a much higher amount, some of the donors were deceived after Transplantation complete the payment.

Several Affected people were not cared for after the surgery, but also medical, because the dealer wanted to save money and the cost of the aftercare in the hospital, not acquisitions. The medical risk of the procedure contributed to the organ donor alone, most of them have no health insurance. Also about the long-term consequences that can go hand-in-hand with the loss of the organ, had been investigated the least. Because after donation, it can lead to complications. Conceivable infections or problems with the scar, for example. In addition, the risk of hypertension is increased and there is the risk that the remaining kidney is diseased, and therefore, a dialysis is necessary and the person Concerned is himself in need of a new body.

The majority of the patients from organ-importing countries, not only in India, but originating from countries such as Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and the United States. There is little information about the recipients of organs, probably because it is an illegal operation. Among other things, their motifs, for example, that you bypass long waiting lists and times on the bodies, no Relatives to live ask for donations or a better suitable institution want to find.

With his series Fonseca does not want to educate only about the Situation in India, but also to help those who were exploited. “They usually suffer in silence,” says the photographer, “and are ashamed to talk about their experiences.”