City Hangout - Main Bazaar, Paharganj

City Hangout – Main Bazaar, Paharganj

Sights of the world. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The Main Bazaar in Paharganj is a clutter of cafés, second-hand book stores and a few atmospheric broken-down mansions. Close to the New Delhi railway station, the bustling district…

City Hangout – Ghalib Academy, H. Nizamuddin Basti

City Hangout – Ghalib Academy, H. Nizamuddin Basti

A poetic corner. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Devoted to Delhi’s great poet Mirza Ghalib, it has a museum and a library. Its auditorium regularly hosts gatherings of Urdu poets — sometimes they arrive dressed in old-world costumes…

Delhi’s Bandaged Heart – John Keats, Nehru Park

Delhi’s Bandaged Heart – John Keats, Nehru Park

Poetry in the city. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The Delhi Walla arranged to meet English poet John Keats in Nehru Park, a garden in the city’s diplomatic enclave. It was an almost imperceptible autumn morning. The sunshine…

City Hangout - Modern Tea House, Haveli Azam Khan

City Hangout – Modern Tea House, Haveli Azam Khan

A sip of the Walled City. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The tea stalls in Mughal-era Old Delhi serve very milky and sweet chai. Modern Tea House, on Haveli Azam Khan, a congested alley off the Chitli Qabar…

City Hangout – Gole Park, Windsor Place

City Hangout – Gole Park, Windsor Place

A serene circle. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] You can cross the entire Gole Park in Central Delhi’s Windsor Place in five minutes flat. It is a traffic roundabout. While there are the usual trees, flowers, grass and…

City Hangout – Mapping National Museum, Janpath

City Hangout – Mapping National Museum, Janpath

Souvenirs of our past. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The National Museum in Central Delhi is a guide to India. Opened in 1960, it has 2, 00,000 exhibits — the older dating back to 2500 BC and beyond….

City Hangout – Government Sunder Nursery, Mathura Road

City Hangout – Government Sunder Nursery, Mathura Road

The magical greenhouse. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] From October to March, it is a country of roses, tulips, poppies and dahlias – all available at bargain basement prices. Government Sunder Nursery – Sunder means ‘beautiful’ in Hindi…

City Hangout - Burger Girl and Likewise, Daryaganj

City Hangout – Burger Girl and Likewise, Daryaganj

A burger for biryani. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] US President Barack Obama graces one wall and actor Arnold Schwarzenegger another. Behind the counter are girls in short skirts. Seated at a table are two young women, in…

City Hangout - Dining Room & Lounge, India International Centre

City Hangout – Dining Room & Lounge, India International Centre

Dining with the VIPs. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Request the fifth table on the right. For before he became president, A.P.J. Abdul Kalam would take his vegetarian thali there. The table was also preferred by late prime…

City Hangout – Inter-State Bus Terminuses, Around Town

City Hangout – Inter-State Bus Terminuses, Around Town

When buses will fly. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Delhi’s international airport is named after Indira Gandhi, while Maharana Pratap has to make do with its main inter-state bus terminus. Unfair? Bus terminals, or bus addas, are not…