City Moment – Closing Time, Daryaganj’s Sunday Book Bazaar
The beautiful Delhi instant.
[Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi]
One evening, one scorching Sunday evening, The Delhi Walla was at the weekly book bazaar in Daryaganj. It was getting dark and a little less hot. The market for second-hand books was no longer crowded. The shoppers had returned home. The exhausted sellers and their equally-tired assistants were packing their unsold books.
Near Golcha cinema, a boy was hauling a huge stack of novels into a rickshaw. His bare arms were wet with sweat.
On the pavement outside Hotel Broadway, a man was sitting on a stack of books. Holding a plastic cup filled with chai, he was lazily flipping through a guidebook to Czechoslovakia, a country that no longer exists. A dozen bundles were placed around him. These books and thousands of other worstsellers elsewhere in the bazaar were the remains of the day. It was a beautiful moment.