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A land the world forgot: A photojournalist sneaks into Myanmar to report on the Kachin freedom movement

The car came to an abrupt stop. "Get out," the driver said. My friend and partner in journalism Tim Patterson and I stumbled in the moonless night through an uneven, bulldozed field toward the sound of a river. When we reached the river, we crossed a creaky bamboo footbridge and scrambled up a loose-dirt hill to an older SUV with its lights off.

"Welcome to Free Kachin," our contact said, smiling broadly.Former KIO headquarters, high in the mountains near the Chinese border

India: The Bhagtghar dam

Sonali Kudva, Pulitzer Student Fellow

We set out at 9.30 a.m. in a Scorpio. The Scorpio was driven by Dhananjay Sardeshpande, former editor of the newspaper where I worked and mentor to me, and my old friend Prachi Patwardhan. Prachi's a social worker by profession, but is currently a professor teaching social work to students. She was there to provide another perspective on the project.

India: The reporting begins

Sonali Kudva, Pulitzer Student Fellow

After speaking with and trying to arrange a meeting with Mr. Gogre, Chief Engineer in charge of the Nira-Deoghar for the last two days, I finally met him today. The venue wasn't ideal but Mr Gogre asked to meet close to his house. So Chaturshringi temple it was.

We met at the juice bar at the base of the hill and sat down. I took out my notepad to write my notes down as he wrote and I filmed. However, he took custody of my notebook and pen himself and illustrated his points for me on them.