City Landmark - Paakar Tree, Constitution Club of India, Central Delhi

City Landmark – Paakar Tree, Constitution Club of India, Central Delhi

A most luxuriant nobility. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] If trees like this didn’t exist, they would have been hard to imagine. Consider, if you will, this luxurious Paakar tree providing more-than-welcome shade. Here at a side garden…

Mission Delhi - Bhoora the Goat, Old Delhi

Mission Delhi – Bhoora the Goat, Old Delhi

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] Downing a cold drink is Bhoora’s own way of dealing with the scorching heat in this Old Delhi alley. As a goat, he’s certainly gotten…

Home Sweet Home - Ruined House, Jacobpura, Gurgaon

Home Sweet Home – Ruined House, Jacobpura, Gurgaon

The bungalow’s story. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] There it stands. Like a half-remembered dream. This hauntingly beautiful house. Its roof has caved in. Its walls are damaged. The underlying bricks emerging out of the peeling paint look…

City Food - Chuski, Around Town

City Food – Chuski, Around Town

Season’s ice candy. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Of course, there are more sophisticated options to beat this horrible Delhi heat— smoothies, gelatos, cold-pressed juices and coconut water. But sucking on chuski, perhaps, is the rawest way of…

Mission Delhi - Muhammed Alam, Outside Hope Apartments, Gurgaon

Mission Delhi – Muhammed Alam, Outside Hope Apartments, Gurgaon

[Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] Summer isn’t a friendly season in our part of the world. But tailor Muhammed Alam’s four children aren’t insisting that he get an AC for their one-room home in Gurgaon village in Gurgaon…

City Walk - Hailey Road, Central Delhi

City Walk – Hailey Road, Central Delhi

Loafing through calmness. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Tucked behind the commercial high-rises of a hectic Connaught Place, Hailey Road, by contrast, is utterly serene with its tree-lined pavements, unapproachable residences, scarce traffic, weather-beaten brick walls and a…

City Food - Bel Sherbet, Galli Suiwallan Street

City Food – Bel Sherbet, Galli Suiwallan Street

Shiva’s drink. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] He sells only one kind of sherbet, but on the other hand it’s said to be Lord Shiva’s favourite. Bel or wood apple sherbet, dispensed at Nafees Khan’s stall, is also…

City Faith - Reading Ram, Ghaziabad

City Faith – Reading Ram, Ghaziabad

Life with the epic. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Pushpa Singh’s drawing room in a Ghaziabad apartment has been temporarily turned into a makeshift temple. She and her husband are hosting a Ramayan Paath, the continuous reading of…

City Monument - Ajmeri Gate, Central Delhi

City Monument – Ajmeri Gate, Central Delhi

A steady landmark. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is so rooted to the place, so entwined to its surroundings, that few realise the monument is there. Ajmeri Gate lies tucked within a traffic square. One road heads…

Mission Delhi - Bijendra Data, Gurgaon

Mission Delhi – Bijendra Data, Gurgaon

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] He is the memento of an earlier age. Bijendra Data’s family legacy consists of the typewriter. “My father had a typewriting training institute in our…