Surabhi Singh

Surabhi Singh

Producer, Head of Academy

Writing about myself! Oh, what a task! I am trying to be a journalist. Yes, trying to! I believe that a degree in journalism cannot make you a journalist. I have a diploma in journalism from Indian Institute of Mass Communication, New Delhi. But does that make me a journalist? Or does getting a job in a media house makes you one?

I was fortunate to start my journey with the nicest people who gave me the liberty to tell stories that touched my heart.

The society we grow up in shapes us. I come from Bihar, one of India’s most backward states. Today, I am privileged but many of my brothers and sisters face hardships that arise from this backwardness. And that reminds me of my responsibility towards the underprivileged sections of society. The journey so far has been extraordinary and has helped me understand both the world around me and within me. I hope the journey remains that of exploration, joy, empathy and understanding.

I can be contacted at Surabhi@Newsreel.Asia.


The Lekshays

Episode 6, ‘The Dinner Table’ I November 2022
Video I 32 Minutes 
By Harshita Rathore
Tenzin Lekshay is one of the 30,000 Tibetan refugees living in the town of Mcleodganj in the north Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. His family fled to India with the Dalai Lama, along with 80,000 other Tibetans, following a failed uprising in 1959. In his conversation with the host Harshita Rathore, Lekshay talks about the Tibetan community-in-exile, their culture, their determination to carry on with the non-violent struggle against China and also their hope to one day go back to their homeland, Tibet.

Delhi: Through the Lens of Gender

MAPPING INDIA, Delhi I September 2022
Video I 23 Minutes
By Jyoti Jangra

Shreya went through panic attacks after being sexually harassed by men in Delhi, India’s national capital which is also known as the country’s most unsafe city for women. Her fear led her to look for empowerment, which she finally found. But that didn’t mean she was now safer than other women in the city.

Being Tribal and Displaced

'Letters,' Chhattisgarh I September 2022
Video I 13 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh and Harshita Rathore

Kartam Kosa, a tribal man from the central state of Chhattisgarh, and his family fled their home in 2005, when a fight between Maoist insurgents and the civilian militia Salwa Judum intensified. Kosa was among 55,000 tribal people who left their ancestral homes and found refuge in the forests of neighbouring states. Years later, he writes an open letter to India’s Home Minister, complaining that he and many other internally displaced tribals may have to flee again, this time because the government of Telangana state has demolished some of their homes.


MAPPING INDIA, Punjab I August 2022
Video I 50 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh
It was out of curiosity that Pavitra tasted alcohol for the first time when he was at school. His adventure soon turned into drug abuse, addiction … and even crime. The story of Pavitra, who lives in Punjab state’s Sri Muktsar Sahib district, may resemble the stories of nearly four million people in the state who abuse substances. Sadly though, few may reach the resolution that he did. But, hopefully, many can, with the inspiration he has to offer.

Till Debt Do Us Part

MAPPING INDIA, Punjab  I July 2022
Video I 19 Minutes
By Ganesh Rajaraman
Deep in debt, Gurjeet Kaur’s father lost hope, and interest, in life. Kaur’s brother, who inherited the debt, followed suit. Like Kaur, thousands of women in the agricultural state of Punjab have similar stories to tell, as farming is becoming increasingly unsustainable and more and more farmers are finding themselves in debt traps over the years.

Shattered Dreams

MAPPING INDIA, Haryana  I July 2022
Video I 29 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh
Sunil Kumar, 22 and Neeraj Jangra, 24, are two of the hundreds of thousands of unemployed youth in the predominantly agricultural state of Haryana who have dreams tied to their ability to earn a living. Those dreams may be shattered if they continue to remain jobless, as agriculture is now largely unsustainable and the private sector remains out of their reach. At 37%, Haryana has the highest unemployment rate in India, as per an independent think tank, Center for Monitoring Indian Economy. Is the government listening?

Digging for Hope

MAPPING INDIA, Haryana I June 2022
Video I 12 Minutes 
By Jyoti Jangra

Sudhir Yadav is a farmer who lives in one of the 78 sub-districts of Haryana state where the groundwater is depleting faster than it can replenish. Yet, like other farmers, he had no option but to keep digging deeper and deeper into the ground in search of water for irrigation until he learned the hard way. However, the blame for his desperation lies elsewhere.


MAPPING INDIA, Uttarakhand I January 2022
Video I 31 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh
Lakshmi Gauniyal’s day starts at dawn and she rests only after dusk. She does all the work, from preparing meals to cutting wood from trees to sowing seeds in their agricultural field and earning money from labour under the government’s social security measure MNREGA. Had it not been for women like Lakshmi, families would have been compelled to migrate away from their villages in Uttarakhand state’s mountainous Pauri Garhwal district. The self-reliant village economy, of which women are the backbone, is what is preventing mass migration in this district.

In the Guise of Love

Episode 3, ‘Trafficked’ I December 2021
Video I 13 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh
Shaheen (not her real name) is one of many women in West Bengal state’s Murshidabad district who believe that when men propose for marriage, they do so out of true love, not knowing that it could be mere pretence of love being used by human traffickers to sell them for labour or sex, or both. Shaheen has been rescued but her suffering carries on.

West Bengal’s Submerged Villages

Newsreel I December 2021
Video I 13 Minutes
By Jessica Goel
Millions of people in India’s West Bengal state have been facing the brunt of meandering rivers for years. Over the last decade, entire villages living on “Charlands” – river islands that emerge as a result of a river changing its path – have had to move to nearby patches of land for up to 16 times. Despite the continual displacement en masse, neither the central government nor the state government of West Bengal has a comprehensive policy to compensate or rehabilitate them, complains Dr. Abul Kalam Mohammad, a professor of geography at Aliah University in Kolkata.

Women Rise Up

Newsreel I October 2021
Video I 9 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh
Women from rural India assemble in a village in the north Indian state of Haryana to take an oath, and declare, that they will not marry, or allow other women in their families to do so, before they are 21 years old. Could this be the beginning of a revolution among the country’s women?

Kashmiriyat Fractured

Newsreel I September 2021
Video I 24 Minutes
By Ganesh Rajaraman, Jessica Goel, Surabhi Singh
Three decades after his brutal displacement, Rajinder Koul Premi, a Hindu from Kashmir, is still looking for answers, especially what led to the collapse of the region’s syncretic society? Will he get the answers? Will he be able to reconcile with the loss?

Lives at Risk

Newsreel I July 2021
Video I 10 Minutes
By Asad Ashraf, Surabhi Singh
Kaazim Ahmad, a 62-year-old man, is stripped and beaten with a blunt object due to his Muslim identity in Noida city near Delhi.

Selfless Service

Newsreel I May 2021
Video I 14 Minutes
By Surabhi Singh, Abhishek Yadav
At the height of the COVID-19 infections and deaths in India, a Sikh group, called Hemkunt Foundation, together with young volunteers, save lives amid what is being seen as a gross neglect by the government.

What are Hospitals Hiding?

Newsreel I May 2021
Video I 10 Minutes
By Abhishek Yadav, Surabhi Singh
While relatives of COVID-19 patients complain hospitals are not giving any information except the news of them passing away, doctors at the government-run Meerut Medical College in Uttar Pradesh state consider it a crime when reporters seek answers.

Life in a Village

Newsreel I May 2021
Video I 11 Minutes
By Abhishek Yadav, Surabhi Singh
The second wave of the coronavirus in India appears to be beginning to subside in cities, but the spread of COVID-19, it seems, is shifting to villages, which look even more unprepared (than cities) to deal with the crisis.

Dinner with the Khans

Episode 1, ‘The Dinner Table’ I May 2021
Video I 25 Minutes
By Harshita Rathore, Surabhi Singh, Abhishek Yadav
Nearly four years after their son was lynched for being Muslim, the Khan family in the northern state of Haryana struggles to cope with the grief while fighting for justice. Host Harshita Rathore explores what identity-based discrimination and violence do to the minds and hearts of members of a community. (The series has been produced with our publishing partner Religion Unplugged.)
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