City Monument - Old Connaught Place Staircase, A Block, Inner Circle

City Monument – Old Connaught Place Staircase, A Block, Inner Circle

Finding lost time. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A creaking wooden staircase going up one side of the hall, opening into a narrow attic, or the mezzanine floor. In the earlier landmarks of the colonial-era Connaught Place (CP)…

City Monument - Delhi's Most Beautiful Door, Gali Badliyan

City Monument – Delhi’s Most Beautiful Door, Gali Badliyan

A heritage nobody knows. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Found. At long last, Delhi’s arguably most beautiful door has been discovered. It doesn’t have a doorbell. It’s not in any of the forts or palaces, or museums. Surely…

City Monument - General Shah Nawaz Khan's Grave, Old Delhi

City Monument – General Shah Nawaz Khan’s Grave, Old Delhi

Hero resting here. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Among those who care for graves of historical people, it is common knowledge that the shrine of Sufi saint Hazrat Sarmad Shahid lies between the Jama Masjid and the Red…

City Monument - Ruined Graves, Lodhi Garden

City Monument – Ruined Graves, Lodhi Garden

Links to past. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Squirrels, a great many of them, are prancing about the dusty stone slabs. Water pitchers—probably kept for birds—are reflecting the cold cloudy sky. Dry leaves litter the ground. And there’s…

City Monument - Hijron ka Khanqah, Mehrauli

City Monument – Hijron ka Khanqah, Mehrauli

The retreat. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A word like ‘freedom’ acquires its true meaning only to those denied it. And so do words like “quarantine’ and ‘self-isolation’, gradually getting more real to us as we experience either…

City Monument - Poet Rahim's Underground Crypt and the Restored Tomb, Hazrat Nizamuddin East

City Monument – Poet Rahim’s Underground Crypt and the Restored Tomb, Hazrat Nizamuddin East

This lies beneath. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Nothing here but silence. And the two graves at the center. This is the windowless crypt of Rahim’s tomb, in central Delhi’s Nizamuddin East. What the visitors see up there…

City Monument - The Church(es) of The Epiphany, Civil Lines, Gurgaon

City Monument – The Church(es) of The Epiphany, Civil Lines, Gurgaon

A tale of two times. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Old Delhi and New Delhi. Old Gurgaon and New Gurgaon. In both cases the ‘old’ and ‘new’ parts stand very close to each other, and yet they are…

City Monument - Dadi-Poti's Tombs, Green Park

City Monument – Dadi-Poti’s Tombs, Green Park

Ode to unknowns. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Every granny needs a monument. And every granddaughter, another one close by. This double requirement is perfectly fulfilled in south Delhi’s breezy Green Park locality, which is home to two…

City Monument - Beyond Humayun's Tomb, Humayun's Tomb

City Monument – Beyond Humayun’s Tomb, Humayun’s Tomb

The world around the icon. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The big one, Pilkhan, is 104 years old, and the small one, frangipani, is just 15. You too might have noticed the juxtaposed beauty of these two trees—…

City Monument - Old Beautiful Doorways, Galli Chooriwallan Street

City Monument – Old Beautiful Doorways, Galli Chooriwallan Street

Celebrating a souvenir. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is arrayed out in six panels. The planks that link them are studded with cap-like decorations, like little black nails. Four gigantic latches are fitted at different corners, their…