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Last Updated : Nov 21, 2020 03:04 PM IST | Source: Reuters

In Peru's mountains, these women search for gold to earn a livelihood

Living with their families in shacks in a gold shantytown in the Andes, women known as "pallaqueras," or gold-pickers, make a living gleaning gold from the leftover rubble dumped by the men who work the gold mine below a glacier.

Reuters
Eva Chura, 42, a 'pallaquera' known as a gold picker, strikes rocks that were discarded from a mine, in search of gold, in the town of La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. "In a week sometimes I can get 1 gram or 2 grams of gold," Chura said. "If I'm lucky it can sometimes be 20 grams, but that's down to luck." (Image: Reuters)

Eva Chura, 42, a 'pallaquera' known as a gold picker, strikes rocks that were discarded from a mine, in search of gold, in the town of La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. "In a week sometimes I can get 1 gram or 2 grams of gold," Chura said. "If I'm lucky it can sometimes be 20 grams, but that's down to luck." (Image: Reuters)

Eva Chura and another woman, who are both pallaqueras', smoke and drink anise while chewing coca leaves, as part of a ritual for searching for gold performed before a shift, in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters. All photos in this slideshow are from October 2019)

Eva Chura and another woman, who are both pallaqueras, smoke and drink anise while chewing coca leaves, as part of a ritual for searching for gold performed before a shift, in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters. All photos in this slideshow are from October 2019)

Eva Chura stands at the entrance of her room in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. "It is very sad to live with garbage and dirt, washing in the cold, with water from the mountain. But you tell yourself to get over it. The children give you strength and courage to work." (Image: Reuters)

Eva Chura stands at the entrance of her room in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. "It is very sad to live with garbage and dirt, washing in the cold, with water from the mountain. But you tell yourself to get over it. The children give you strength and courage to work." (Image: Reuters)

A woman who works as a pallaquera searches for gold as she strikes rocks extracted from a mine in the town of La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

A woman who works as a pallaquera searches for gold as she strikes rocks extracted from a mine in the town of La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

Men who work as miners walk past a shrine, as they make their way to a gold mine in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

Men who work as miners walk past a shrine, as they make their way to a gold mine in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

Men who work as miners talk to each other as they sit inside a gold mine in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

Men who work as miners talk to each other as they sit inside a gold mine in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

A woman carrying a child on her back buys chicken at a shop in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

A woman carrying a child on her back buys chicken at a shop in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

Shoe polish, socks and a torch lie on the floor of a miner's room in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

Shoe polish, socks and a torch lie on the floor of a miner's room in La Rinconada, the Andes, Peru. (Image: Reuters)

First Published on Nov 21, 2020 03:04 pm
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