Photo Essay – Ramzan Sky, Matia Mahal Bazaar

The silvery stretches. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Yesterday, it was a blue sky. Today, it’s embroidered in silver. One day before the start of the Islamic month of Ramzan, the sky above the Matia Mahal street in Old Delhi was screened with silver jhaalars. The Delhi Walla saw a man climbing atop […]


Photo Essay – Sufi’s World, Mehrauli

Meow. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Sufi lives in a monument-facing apartment in South Delhi’s Mehrauli. She shares it with Vidya Rao who is a human. Sufi is very old now. She spends her days reading books about fellow cats. These days she is engaged with Carl Van Vechten’s The Tiger in the […]


Photo Essay – The Empty Banquet Hall, Pahari Bhojla

Scenes of silence. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The blue-robed chairs are neatly arranged around tables that are covered with white clothes. This must be the setting for a formal sit-down dinner but there is no one. One evening The Delhi Walla enters a public hall in Pahari Bhojla, a congested Walled City […]

La Hune

Photo Essay – La Hune Bookstore’s Second Life, Paris

A great landmark’s afterlife. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Once upon a time one of the most beautiful bookshops in the world was in the most beautiful part of beautiful Paris. La Hune, next to the historic Saint-Germain-des-Prés church, closed down on 14 June, 2015, due to depleting business. The Delhi Walla was […]


Photo Essay – Bahrisons Booksellers After Balraj Bahri’s Passing Away, Khan Market

Life of a bookshop. [photos by Florian Morin; text by Mayank Austen Soofi] February 26, 2016: Balraj Bahri Malhotra, the 87-year-old founder of Delhi’s iconic Bahrisons Booksellers bookstore in Khan Market, passes away. (The Delhi Walla wrote his obituary here.) February 27: His funeral takes place at Central Delhi’s Lodhi Crematorium. The bookstore remains closed. […]


City Notice – Somewhere in Delhi, An Exhibition in Venice

[By Mayank Austen Soofi] Can you touch a Facebook post? Yes, you can. Friends, the first batch of my select Facebook posts–both photographs and texts–have been adapted by Venice-based designer Anna Gerotto into the soft texture of a hand-woven muslin fabric. The fabrics will be displayed at two venues in Venice. Details below. 17 Printings […]


Photo Essay – The Chitli Qabar Urban Art Installation, Old Delhi

A temporary art exhibit. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The Old Quarter of Delhi is known for many wonders. The art of spitting noisily has been cultivated to a high form here. Many tourists, of course, come to see the Mughal-era monuments and buildings of this historical district. These days the sophisticated travellers—the […]


Photo Essay – Shakespeare’s World, Around Delhi

Living with the Bard. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Disclaimer: This article has stolen many phrases from the complete works of a writer who had a history of taking inspiration from people’s lives. In Sufism, the death anniversary of a mystic is not mourned but celebrated, and the celebration is called Urs. Now, […]