City Food - The Perfectly Impure Dosa, Indian Coffee House

The definitive North Indian version. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The romantics celebrate the Indian Coffee House for its turbaned waiters and torn rexine sofas (which, alas, have been replaced by steel chairs). The idealists, who believe that…

Home Sweet Home – Shamim us Din 's Cluttered Room, Gali Mochan

A whole world. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Old Delhi’s Shamim ud Din loves machinery. So much so that he decided, years ago, that he needed a tiny dark room near the family residence to store it in….

City Hangout - Gallery of Musical Instruments, Rabindra Bhavan, Mandi House

Music as objects. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Here, you’ll make friends with the Dama from Tripura, which looks like a tapering dholak (drum). And there’s the Sanitar, a kind of lute from Kashmir, with a hollow resonator…

City List - Daily-Wage Carpenter's Kit, Sadar Bazaar

Delhi by list. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] You may know what it’s like at Central Delhi’s Sadar Bazaar, so congested you can literally crash into somebody. The Delhi Walla almost stumbled over Muhammed Jaafar, a carpenter sitting…

Julia Child in Delhi – Author Pushpesh Pant Makes His Cool Mutton Khichri, Gurgaon

The great chef’s life in Delhi. [Text and pictures by Mayank Austen Soofi] Nobody dares to offers khichri to guests. This rice-and-dal combination is best eaten in complete privacy, as comfort food, or when one is suffering from an upset…

City News - Mona Ahmed, Delhi's Most Iconic Transgender, is No More, Mehnediya Qabristan Graveyard

Passing of a legend. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Mona Ahmed, India’s most iconic transgender person, died on the night of 9 September 2017. She would have turned 82 in November. Ms Ahmed was the principal subject of…

Atget’s Corner – 1051-1055, Delhi Photos

The visible city. [By Mayank Austen Soofi] Delhi is a voyeur’s paradise and The Delhi Walla also makes pictures. I take photos of people, streets, flowers, eateries, drawing rooms, tombs, landscapes, buses, colleges, Sufi shrines, trees, animals, autos, libraries, birds,…

City Monument - Hanuman-Ji's Statue, Jhandewalan Park

Inside the icon. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It’s so very tempting to regard that gleaming metro train zipping past the Lord Hanuman statue as a near collision of ancient beliefs with the uneasy ethos of the modern….

Mission Delhi - Salma Sultan, Jangpura

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Salma Sultan hasn’t changed at all, down to the famous red rose tucked gloriously in her bun. The famous Doordarshan newsreader stopped reading TV news…

City Nature - Monsoon Sky, Across Delhi

That touch of impressionism. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The rainy day draws to a close here in west Delhi’s Janakpuri when suddenly something incredible happens. Suddenly the western sky bleaches, a strange shade of reddish-orange that startles…