Memories … Dilli Or DehliPosted: October 16, 2008
I was seeing this program on travel & living channel … This program is called Feast India. I don’t know what its supposed to be about … Feast gives the impression its about food. But I guess the program is about the feast that is India … A feast for the senses, body, mind, and soul. From the Aazaan at the Jama Masjid … Or, if you have lived in Darya Ganj, the Ghataa Masjid, or the Zinat-Ul Masjid … To the Langar at Gurudwara Sis Ganj, the Jawan Gurdwara at Darya Ganj (from where my Grandmother would get a cup-ful of Kaadhaa every morning, only small portions for the rest of the family, the rest for me …), or at any Gurudwara anywhere you might go … Feast again for the senses, definitely for the body, and the soul.
What am I writing about? Nothing in particular. Quite a few things in general. Having born and grown up in Darya Ganj, I have experienced, and continue to experience, the magic of Dilli … Or Dehli, if you may. From the fruit juice shops of nayaa Darya Ganj, to the small shop, with some of the best Mutton on offer. From Bedmiyaan (Pooris stuffed with ground Daal … Which is also called Pitthi) at Jain’s next to Ansari Road, to the Seekh Kababs sold on carts in the neighbourhood of Jama Masjid, to the Mutton Korma and Nargisi Koftas at Karim’s, or the Rabdi Faloodaa at Akashdeep, to the Giani’s Fruit Cream, and of course … Pindi de Chholle Bhatoore … You can be assured of a feast.
So much for the feast for the palate. Now, to the senses. From the bylanes of Chandni Chowk, Khari Baoli, Chawri Bazaar, to the chaos and magic of Meena Bazaar (wikipedia doesnt have an article for Meena Bazar … at least, not the original one). That’s an expression I quite liked … Chaos and Magic. Describes Dilli to the T. So, chaos and magic it is. Or, is the chaos part of the magic? Or does the magic spring from chaos? I don’t know, and maybe, beyond a point, I would just call this semantics. What I do know … I am Hindu, but I do miss, at times, the wafting of the strains of the Aazaan across rooftops, carried forth by the breeze, accompanied by those beautiful kites.