Regal Cinema, Connaught Place, New Delhi


Passing through Connaught Place I am filled with nostalgia on observing Regal Cinema a part of Indian Cine History.

For more information see:-

Presswallah of a different kind


Presswallahs of New Delhi
There are two kinds of presswallahs in New Delhi. Reporters, editors and photographers working for newspapers, TV channels and radio are one kind of presswallah. The other presswallah is an integral part of everyone else’s life. He or she is the person who irons your clothes using a very heavy contraption which is heated with red-hot charcoals kept inside its body.
One presswallah serves about a hundred families in a residential area. Territories are clearly demarcated. The business is taken care of by the dhobi community and no one else is welcome to infiltrate. Uncles, Aunts, grandparents, children, mom and pop, sons and sisters all open branches over a vast region. These are simple open sided sheds. You can see the hard working presswallah working through harsh summers and winters.
They have their own holidays. The last Thursday of every month is the most common single holiday per month for this diligent community. The going rate in well to do residential areas is Rupees three per shirt or trouser. Bed-sheets and table cloths are ironed for a hefty sum of Rupees ten. Only a few presswallahs are sending their children to schools. It is inevitable that with education children will seek less tedious jobs and businesses.

Toronto to Gurudaan



Arriving at New Delhi Airport from Toronto I was overawed by the sudden heat and the clamoring, rushing horde of humanity. There were new unpleasant smells. Sweat and grime and taxiwallahs breathing their onion tinted Anglo words at me. ‘Taxi Saab?’ ‘Taxi Saab’ I had frayed nerves from the long flight and the separation from my husband. I thought ‘this is all a mistake, if I am going to be hounded by so many people all the time.’ I looked with dismay at the burning- in- the- Sun black and yellow taxis which seemed very ancient and hot without air-conditioning. I was not ready for another physical trial what with the jet lag and the airline wine induced headache. I should have gone to Tahiti.


“Anna Madam” I looked around and a slim tall dark man with handsome features wearing a blue colored uniform. He had a gentle smile and trustworthy eyes.’ I am Anil from Gurudaan. I have a car waiting. Please let me take your luggage.’ He steered the baggage trolley through this unbelievable surge of humanity. 


The Sun was beating down relentlessly with a hair dryer blast of wind. The bags were expertly stowed away by Anil and to my surprise I found myself comfortable in the back seat of an air conditioned Toyota.