Dhaka: fastest growing megacity in the world
A five-part, multimedia series on the coming dystopia that is urbanization.
Erik German and Solana Pyne
DHAKA, Bangladesh — The future is here, and it smells like burning trash.
As the evening call to prayer echoes across Dhaka’s teeming slums, a bluish haze rises in the murky air. Cooking happens mostly on open fires in the shantytowns of the Bangladeshi capital, the flames kindled with paper, scavenged lumber and bits of plastic junk.
On a recent evening in a broken labyrinth of shacks called the Korail slum, a wiry young mother in a red sari stooped to light the clay hearth outside her family’s one-room home. Mina, 24, touched her match to a castoff vinyl folder, three-hole-punched for documents she’ll never read.