I cover general news. I used to be based in Afghanistan, where I shot lots of conflict-related stories, but in early 2012 I moved to India. My role here has expanded to managing a relatively big team of photographers across the country, and in Afghanistan too, to some extent.
My earliest photo memories are of family pictures.
If I’d had the chance, I would have gone abroad for higher education, but I hadn’t made up my mind what I wanted to become.
I was trying to flee Afghanistan to join a brother in London when 9/11 happened. I used my English language skills and knowledge of the area as an interpreter/fixer for a Reuters cameraman who was covering the U.S.-led offensive against the Taliban regime.
After the Taliban fell, I started learning news photography in the field from a Reuters staff photographer who was covering the aftermath.
I was accompanying a reporter on a trip outside Kabul to help him with the language, and I was asked to take a few pictures with a small digital camera, because there was no photographer available.
It’s pretty hard to say what I’d like to be doing in 10 years. I don’t contemplate on these thoughts.
When I am shooting news, I edit in the field on my camera. On my way back I make up my mind about the best shots. I file the first two pictures at least very quickly, and then I look at the whole thing carefully and try to cater for different types of clients with the follow-up images.
I respect everyone who is honest in their photography. That means photographers who do not set up, direct, touch or retouch their pictures.
News photography is a tool to inform, and to tell a story with a frame or series of frames. Truly achieving that requires a lot of discipline and dedication.