Being Human

Being Human

I have always wondered about what makes a human “human”. Is it their high...

Tambe ‘Vada Pav’

Tambe ‘Vada Pav’

Laxmikant Tambe* had studied until class V and became a motor mechanic soon after, to earn a living. In 1979, he suffered from a chest injury and got admitted at a hospital when he had some major realisations about himself and the world. He came here, to Mumbai,...

Shut Up And Listen!

Shut Up And Listen!

The biggest takeaway for someone like me, just knocking the doors of the development world is to understand this basic rule of listening and asking the many whys and questioning the many whats.

Mask On, Chuck It Mask Off

Mask On, Chuck It Mask Off

Mask On As I stepped out trusting the bright sun, still carrying an umbrella hoping for rains, with my unusual precautionary gear which included a mask, face shield and gloves, I felt like an alien. I noticed that almost everything had opened up. New business models...

Water Water Everywhere

Water Water Everywhere

The allure of Nizamuddin basti's patterning of two polarities co-existing in the same space. The left is a sombre tone of white while the right is a jumble of vibrant rocks stacked in cement. If it's your first time in a Basti, the Nizamuddin Basti will surprise you....

Inside Sharma Ji’s Religious Haven

Inside Sharma Ji’s Religious Haven

Baldev Sharma's* shop where you'll find idols of gods and goddesses belonging to Hindu, Jain and Buddhist faiths, most of which have been carved on order by customers for various temples and homes. Hailing from a lineage of sculptors, Sharma ji, almost on cue, begins...

आजीविका और काम की तलाश

आजीविका और काम की तलाश

हाल ही में जब मैं निजामुद्दीन बस्ती गयी, तो मेरी मुलाकात और बातचीत वहां रहने वाले कुछ लोगों से हुई, जो बाहर से आकर यहाँ बस गए थे. उनमें से कुछ यहाँ लिख रही हूँ…

The Collective Identity Shared By Hazrat Nizamuddin Basti

The Collective Identity Shared By Hazrat Nizamuddin Basti

You might visit Nizamuddin Basti for a multitude of reasons, be it delectable kebabs, witnessing a Qawwali at the iconic Nizamuddin Dargah or a visit to the insightful Ghalib academy. However, if you care to halt and have chai at any of the stalls, the chaos becomes...

Parda Park: An Open Space Or An Opening To A Tainted Future?

Parda Park: An Open Space Or An Opening To A Tainted Future?

Children playing and studying in the park during open hours In a tightly packed locality like The Hazrat Nizamuddin Basti, clean and safe open spaces are a necessity for the well-being of the community. There are numerous barren, open patches of land but they are used...

From Waste To Weave

From Waste To Weave

In the menace of plastic in Bhuj, lies livelihoods of many weavers of Kutch. Upcycling plastic has proven to not only be a livelihood initiative, but has morphed into a culture of love, protection and well-being of the planet.

Attar/Ittar: The History Of Fragrance In Nizzamudin Basti

Attar/Ittar: The History Of Fragrance In Nizzamudin Basti

Through the narrow lanes, with congested buildings, alongside people desperate to welcome us with open arms to avail their paid services; a variety of meat hanging and smelling; a sweet essence emerges suddenly from the next shop electrifying the sense of smell - an...

What Happened To The ‘Superspreaders’ At Nizamuddin Basti?

What Happened To The ‘Superspreaders’ At Nizamuddin Basti?

An account based on observations and conversations from three days of walking around the Nizamuddin basti in Delhi A popular Bollywood song ‘Kun Faya Kun’ introduced me to the Nizamuddin Dargah in Delhi a few years ago. It remained to be the ‘Kun Faya Kun place’ for...

An Interaction With A Grocery Store Owner In Goregaon

An Interaction With A Grocery Store Owner In Goregaon

On the second day of the immersion, as a part of India Fellow induction training, we were asked to conduct a semi-structured interview with one of the people we had spoken to, the previous day. Eager to learn more about the economics of their business, I rushed to the...

Of Resilience and Hope: Voices from Nizamuddin Basti

Of Resilience and Hope: Voices from Nizamuddin Basti

I have been to the Nizamuddin Dargah before but never had I imagined going beyond it, into the criss-crossing alleys of the Nizamuddin Basti, let alone going there thrice in one day!!! To be honest, as someone who has lived her entire life in Delhi and had visited...

A Single Story Across The Bridge

A Single Story Across The Bridge

Slogans spray painted on the wall of a flyover in front of one of Nizamuddin Basti's exits As a young girl, having always lived in Delhi, walking through Nizamuddin basti on a Wednesday morning quite literally brought me to a halt. There was so much to take in, to...