City Food - Muhammed Afroz’s Bihari Jhaal Moori, Mathura Road

Taste of Bihar. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] No doubt there are even more superior jhaal moori snacks sold elsewhere in town. But Muhammed Afroz’s offerings are unique. Just a year ago he came up with the idea…

Mission Delhi - Ram Lal, Gurgaon

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It sure is not his most precious possession. It certainly is the most eye-catching. “It’s my guthi,” says Ram Lal, taking out the pouch from…

City Hangout - Anupama Sweets, Kailash Colony

Homely eatery. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Visitors to Delhi who hang around for a few days can’t help noticing all those exotic restaurants in fancy markets and malls offering specialty dishes from around the world, and also…

Mission Delhi - Ram Jeevan, Near Red Fort

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Paan vendor Ram Jeevan is sitting on a pavement near the Red Fort patiently waiting for customers while recalling his long years in Delhi. “I…

Our Self-Written Obituaries – Hetvi Jethwani, IIT Delhi

The 243rd death. [Text and photo sent by Hetvi Jethwani] The self-proclaimed “mad” scientist Hetvi died on her 42nd birthday doing what she loved, lying down in her comfortable hammock, reading. Sadly, death seized her before she could reach the…

City Landmark - The Banyan Tree, Shiv Park, Jacobpura

A solitary wilderness. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is like spotting a long-haired hippie stranded amid a group of suited-booted hedge fund managers. The banyan is looking that out of place. The tree stands in the centre…

City Walk - Hauz Rani, South Delhi

Signs of a locality. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] At first glance, this South Delhi village seems very unremarkable as a cluster of ordinary lanes and dwellings. But like so much else in Delhi, Hauz Rani reveals its…

City List - The Ghalibians, Ghalib Academy

People of Ghalib’s world. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A long beard. A pointed Turki topi. That’s Ghalib, the illustrated portrait that adorns the cover of his poetry books. Many of us might not have read the city’s…

Mission Delhi - Rameshwar Thakur, Near Ramlila Maidan

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] If there’s one thing this footpath barber truly prizes, it’s his torn umbrella. On this drizzly summer day, it’s keeping Rameshwar Thakur relatively dry while…

City Walk - A Lane in Jacoobpura, Gurgaon

Another country. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] This is a sudden dive into peacefulness. As if you have not entered into a mere lane but a region of light and void and silence. The very air feels on…