City Culture - The Art of Seat Weaving, Near Tolstoy's Statue

City Culture – The Art of Seat Weaving, Near Tolstoy’s Statue

Handmade chairs. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Do you know who has made the seat of the chair on which you are sitting? A man or a woman, certainly, but this might be true only up to a…

City Culture - Delhi's Table Manners, Kasturba Gandhi Marg

City Culture – Delhi’s Table Manners, Kasturba Gandhi Marg

Dining rituals. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The delicious food was being served free to passers-by in honor of goddess Mata Rani. The road-side bhandara counter had large cauldrons filled with aloo subzi and deep-fried pooris. One afternoon…

City Culture - Khushwant Singh's Drawing Room Secrets, Sujan Singh Park

City Culture – Khushwant Singh’s Drawing Room Secrets, Sujan Singh Park

Daughter Mala Dayal breaks her silence. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Please Do Not Ring The Bell Unless You Are Expected – This is the notice that continues to greet the visitors outside author Khushwant Singh’s home although…

City Notice - Three Great Delhi Chroniclers to Come Together, Oxford Bookstore

City Notice – Three Great Delhi Chroniclers to Come Together, Oxford Bookstore

RV Smith, Sadia Dehlvi and Rakhshanda Jalil. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is to be a rare evening. Three great living chroniclers of Delhi will come together on stage to chat about their lives in the capital….

City Life - Delhi Lovers, Lodhi Gardens

City Life – Delhi Lovers, Lodhi Gardens

The geography of love. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Some say that love’s a little boy. Some say it’s a bird. Some say it makes the world go round — so mused a long dead poet. In Delhi,…

City Culture – De Bhasar, British Council

City Culture – De Bhasar, British Council

The philosophy of nonsense. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A rainbow. The Delhi Walla saw this poster on the high-security wall of the British Council on Kasturba Gandhi Marg. It showed the slogan ‘Love is great’. This is…

City Culture - Pissing Men, India Gate & Elsewhere

City Culture – Pissing Men, India Gate & Elsewhere

Urination is prohibited. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The two men were urinating against the monumental backdrop of India Gate. One of them, a photographer who refused to give his name, was defiant: “I take pictures of tourists….

Hidden in Plain Sight - Arundhati Roy on Caste & The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi

Hidden in Plain Sight – Arundhati Roy on Caste & The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi

An interview with the author-essayist. [Photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] “Arundhati (Roy) is my friend. She’s a good writer. But I don’t take her comments seriously. She once described the Naxalites as ‘Gandhians with Guns’. Let’s see if she’ll change…

City Culture – De Bhasar, Shankar Market

City Culture – De Bhasar, Shankar Market

The philosophy of nonsense. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A grey-and-white peacock. A tree laden with shopping bags. A sadhu with skin the color of burnt molasses. And two almost-naked male dancers. The Delhi Walla saw these and…

City Culture - Brecht in Delhi, Sri Ram Centre

City Culture – Brecht in Delhi, Sri Ram Centre

Good persons of our capital. [Text and photos by Manika Dhama] On the Christmas Eve of 2013 theatre enthusiasts lined up outside the Sri Ram Centre in Central Delhi to meet Ramkali, the central character in ASMITA Theatre Group’s adaption…