With a Bihari carpenter on his maiden Metro safar

The other day, while returning from work, a teenaged boy—wearing a loose-fit trouser and a faded red t-shirt, his hair in a mess—approached me at the Rajiv Chowk metro station. He looked bewildered. “Bhaiya, Noida City Centre ke liye kaunsi metro leni hai?”1 he asked. Since I was going to Mayur Vihar, I asked him to…

An interview with Aruni Kashyap

Mridul, my friend, told me how life had changed in the village after people with guns started to roam around like rabid dogs. Everyone in the family had been killed. Hiren, his wife, their two sons who were in primary school, his eighty year-old grandmother, his mother, his father and the maid who came to…

Backpacking in Mawlynnong

It was quite congested inside the Sumo. People were crammed up and didn’t understand English or Hindi. We were the only two backpackers in a jeep full of workers, traders and cultivators who were returning to their respective villages after a hard day of work in the capital city of Shilong.    *** Within an…