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Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.1

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Rafai Fakirs, Hyderabad - No.1

Graphic images of the Muslim sect’s self-mutilation practices, filmed in late-1920s India.

Amateur film 1929 4 mins


Warning: this film contain very explicit images of self-mutilation that you may find disturbing. This is the first of four films shot by E.H. Hunt on the veranda of his bungalow as part of his research into the self-mutilation practices of the Rafai Fakirs, a Muslim sect in Hyderabad, southern India. Not for the faint hearted, these scenes include eyeball gouging and cheek piercing.

Edmund Henderson Hunt (1874-1952) was Chief Medical Officer of the Nizam's State Railway, Hyderabad, southern India, from 1903-31. Hunt’s papers and photographs relating to the Rafai Fakirs can be found in the National Archives.