City Library - Rakhshanda Jalil's Urdu Books + Her Forthcoming Urdu Festival, Central Delhi

City Library – Rakhshanda Jalil’s Urdu Books + Her Forthcoming Urdu Festival, Central Delhi

A vanishing world. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Can you dream of touching with your own hand Ghalib’s handwritten poem? Well, just visit author Rakhshanda Jalil’s private library. One freezing evening, Ms Jalil unfolds this priceless object on…

City Life - The Marvelous Sighting of The Bride's Palki, Galli Chooriwallan

City Life – The Marvelous Sighting of The Bride’s Palki, Galli Chooriwallan

The long life of the past. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It was draped in silk, or so it seemed. One cold night The Delhi Walla comes across a silver-plated palki (aka doli), the palanquin traditionally used to…

City Faith - The Urs Qawwalis, or Death Anniversary Celebrations, of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya, Central Delhi

City Faith – The Urs Qawwalis, or Death Anniversary Celebrations, of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya, Central Delhi

The Sufi date. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Ranbir Kapoor. Rockstar. Kun Faya Kun. This particular actor and his 2011 movie and its chartbuster song, a qawwali, are what many of us think of when the Sufi shrine…

Mission Delhi – Ibrar Ahmad, Hazrat Nizamuddin's Sufi Shrine

Mission Delhi – Ibrar Ahmad, Hazrat Nizamuddin’s Sufi Shrine

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Huddled within the folds of a white shawl, he is sitting as still as a rock. One cold night The Delhi Walla walks upto a…

Netherfield Ball – MP Swapan Dasgupta Leads The New Right-Wing Elite at Hindol Sengupta’s Book Launch, Teen Murti Bhawan

Netherfield Ball – MP Swapan Dasgupta Leads The New Right-Wing Elite at Hindol Sengupta’s Book Launch, Teen Murti Bhawan

The party secrets. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Their books will never be banned. They will never be called antinational. They are the beautiful anti-liberals of the right. These days, it is said, everybody in Delhi wants to…

City Wall - Maidens' Way, Civil Lines

City Wall – Maidens’ Way, Civil Lines

The calming path. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The short walk from the underground Civil Lines metro station in North Delhi to hotel Oberoi Maidens offers a beauty distilled out of ordinariness. The bus stop outside the station…

City Library – Aanchal Malhotra’s Books, Safdarjung Enclave

City Library – Aanchal Malhotra’s Books, Safdarjung Enclave

A vanishing world. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Love books? Then envy Aanchal Malhotra. Her parents run Bahrisons Booksellers, India’s most successful independently owned bookstore. One morning The Delhi Walla enters Ms Malhotra’s book-lined home in Safdarjang Enclave….

City Life - Winter Couture for the Goats, Walled City

City Life – Winter Couture for the Goats, Walled City

Cold days, warm goats. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] When Old Delhi’s abundant goats start appearing with garlands around their neck, we know we are nearing Eid ul Zuha, the Muslim festival in which the animals are offered…

City Neighborhood - The 'Illegal' LNJP Colony, Near 5-Star Lalit Hotel

City Neighborhood – The ‘Illegal’ LNJP Colony, Near 5-Star Lalit Hotel

Life in the invisible city. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The place is like a kaleidoscope—the colours change swiftly. First, you are greeted by a yellow-painted brick wall. It turns pink around the corner. The next door is…

City Moment – Music, Food, Friends, Mobile Phone at Author Sadia Dehlvi's Drawing Room, H. Nizamuddin East

City Moment – Music, Food, Friends, Mobile Phone at Author Sadia Dehlvi’s Drawing Room, H. Nizamuddin East

The memorable instant. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It was the late afternoon of the last day of the last year. The drawing room was filled with guests–many of these elegant people had their eyes closed, their feet…