A picture of wildebeests at Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. The photo took fourth place at the Al Thani Award. Image Credit: Sankha Kar/XPress

Dubai: A Dubai-based photographer has struck gold with a spur of the moment photograph while on holiday in Africa.

Sankha Kar, chief photographer at newspaper XPRESS, bagged the fourth- place gold medal in one of the biggest photography contests in the world — the Al Thani Award for Photography 2009 — for his shot of wildebeest on the Serengeti.

"You could feel life beating on the earth. I found myself so close to the wildebeest migration — millions of them running about, looking for food," Kar said of the photo which won under the animal category.

He, however, never expected to win a gold medal for the snap which he took on the spur of the moment at the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania.

"It was my first experience of shooting wildlife in the open. I usually take news pictures in the city," the Indian photojournalist said.

"The soft light [in Africa] was just right; you can see shadows playing in the dust through the air. It gives you a sense of the action."

Kar is no stranger to bagging professional awards, and his pictures have often graced XPRESS covers.


  • Almost 54,000 entries
  • Over 6,000 participants
  • More than 90 countries
  • General and Animal categories; print and digital sections in 2009