City Landmark - Face of Stoicism, Anand Vihar

City Landmark – Face of Stoicism, Anand Vihar

A portrait in acceptance. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] To be emotionally resilient to misfortune. To accept the moment as it presents itself. If you can be this, then you’re a stoic person. You may dig deeper by…

Delhi’s Proust Questionnaire – Divya Babu, Sector 54, Gurgaon

Delhi’s Proust Questionnaire – Divya Babu, Sector 54, Gurgaon

The parlour confession. [By Mayank Austen Soofi] The rain has stopped and the evening sky is looking like an inverted golden bowl. Divya Babu is enjoying this magical sight perched far above the wet earth mired in flooded underpasses and…

City Moment - The ABCD Boy, Near Oberoi Hotel Flyover

City Moment – The ABCD Boy, Near Oberoi Hotel Flyover

A poignant traffic light instant. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] The evening showers have stopped one hour ago, but the roadside ditches are still full of rainwater. Some prudent scooterists have actually kept their protective plastic capes wrapped…

City Life - Poetry after Second Surge, Ghalib Academy

City Life – Poetry after Second Surge, Ghalib Academy

Like a condolence. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Each person is separated from the other by a seat plastered with a printed leaflet cautioning “Please do not sit here.” They were put up last year during the first…

City Hangout - Upstairs View, Khan Market

City Hangout – Upstairs View, Khan Market

The market innards. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Chimneys painted in funky yellow and red. Long AC ducts of varying lengths, spreading out like the pipes of a plumbing system. Black water tanks perched like giant insects. The…

City Food - Nafees Khan's Sherbet Stall, Gali Suiwallan Street

City Food – Nafees Khan’s Sherbet Stall, Gali Suiwallan Street

A steady landmark. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] He’s here, still all smiles—or so it seems, for he’s in a mask. He has survived through the two surges of the coronavirus pandemic. He is the face of a…

City Walk - Disappearing Bungalows, Green Park

City Walk – Disappearing Bungalows, Green Park

Going with the wind. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] A gate just big enough for a car to pass through. Beyond it, a small lawn on the side, not fanatically trimmed. And then the single-storey house, not modern-looking,…

City Life - Back of Labourers, Entire Delhi Region

City Life – Back of Labourers, Entire Delhi Region

Back story. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] Parked outside a narrow lane in Gurgaon’s Bhim Garh Kheri in the Greater Delhi Region, the handcart is stacked with bricks. Two labourers are carrying these to a house being built…

City Landmark - Jamun Tree, Connaught Place

City Landmark – Jamun Tree, Connaught Place

Season’s sight. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The ground looks like a fresh battlefield, splattered with blood stains, slippery with hundreds of used bullets. The blood isn’t red, but purple. And the bullets are actually jamuns. They have…

City Moment - Syed & Bhuriya, Ansari Road

City Moment – Syed & Bhuriya, Ansari Road

A Delhi instant. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Rickshaw puller Syyed lives alone. That’s not entirely correct, he clarifies. “I’m not completely alone. I have a saathi (companion).” Syyed explains that at night he sleeps on his rickshaw….