Mission Delhi - Fajru Rahman, Near Kasturba Gandhi Hospital for Women and Children

Mission Delhi – Fajru Rahman, Near Kasturba Gandhi Hospital for Women and Children

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] His pants are torn. His shirt is blackened with dirt. He matter-of-factly points out these facts. Fajru Rahman is sitting on a rickshaw (not his)…

Mission Delhi - Karua, Meethapur

Mission Delhi – Karua, Meethapur

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] There’s a saying in Hindi—baal ki khaal ukharna, to peel off the skin of the hair. That’s what this grey-haired man is upto, on a…

Mission Delhi - Suresh, Sector 14, Gurgaon

Mission Delhi – Suresh, Sector 14, Gurgaon

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] He walks to the black dog here on a pavement in Gurgaon’s sector 14. The dog turns his head towards him, and wags his tail….

Mission Delhi - Om Prakash, Opposite Civil Hospital

Mission Delhi – Om Prakash, Opposite Civil Hospital

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] No customers are coming to Pandit Om Prakash. The astrologer’s pavement stall is very modest, but a longtime landmark in the area, here in Gurgaon,…

Mission Delhi - Bharati, Central Delhi

Mission Delhi – Bharati, Central Delhi

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] Bharati is 24. She lives in Delhi with husband, Ravi, who is 27, and their son, Bhupen, who is 3. Her other son lives with…

Mission Delhi - Ram Bran, Hazrat Nizamuddin West

Mission Delhi – Ram Bran, Hazrat Nizamuddin West

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] It is almost midnight. The neighbourhood groceries have closed for the day. The area’s sole eatery too has downed its shutters. The three attendants at…

Mission Delhi - Anand, Sultanpuri & Elsewhere

Mission Delhi – Anand, Sultanpuri & Elsewhere

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Isn’t he a Hemingway lookalike? But he only looks like the great American writer from a distance, perhaps because of his beard, or because of…

Mission Delhi - Hari Om, On the Road

Mission Delhi – Hari Om, On the Road

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The white hair are standing spindly upon his head, ably covering the bald patch at the center. When the auto rickshaw stops at the Purana…

Mission Delhi - Reham Ilahi, Ballimaran

Mission Delhi – Reham Ilahi, Ballimaran

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Seasoned machines clog up the space of the small room. Their owner is sitting in between. Dressed in a blue pathan suit and a mustard…

Mission Delhi - Dhanam, Pragati Maidan

Mission Delhi – Dhanam, Pragati Maidan

One of the one percent in 13 million. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The most endearing aspect about the picturesque foot-over bridges that fan out from Pragati Maidan metro station are not those bridges. But a cheery snack…