UK-based actress Deana Uppal has just released the trailer of 52-minute documentary India’s Forgotten People that captures the story of the nomadic lives of Gadia Lohars of Rajasthan, India’s largely forgotten community. The actress and entrepreneur spent the last year with the Gaddi community and found them as interesting and intriguing people and strongly felt a strong need to represent them.
“I came to Mumbai 10 years ago and quickly discovered that two different worlds coexisted in India. One, the upper class and the second, communities trapped in poverty. The story is about one of those communities. I wanted to know more and discover a side of India which I never knew,” says Deana. The film presents the history and hardships faced by the community, besides questioning the society over its treatment of the weaker sections which are struggling to survive.
The Gadia Lohars worked as blacksmiths in regions of Rajasthan under Rajput kings in the 16th century and they were highly skilled craftsmen of swords and shields. Consequently, the community members became nomads and started moving from places to places in bullock carts and treated these carts as their homes. Cart in Hindi is called ‘Gadi’ and the blacksmith refers to lohar. This is the reason why the community came to be known as the ‘Gadia Lohars’.
Deana has tried to sensitively investigate and reveal the life of India’s forgotten community. A beauty pageant titleholder and business entrepreneur, she was also the winner of Miss India UK 2012 and was also one of the housemates in Big Brother 13 (UK). She has been has been featured in various movies as well.