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Bharat Darshan

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What are your favourite chai partners?

Food, Indian Belly

Ask most Indians and they’d agree that there’s something about the garma garam chai that makes chilly winter mornings warmer and sultry summer evenings tolerable. On weekends, there is no rush, you can hold a cup in your hands and absorb the beauty of the sunrise. On weekdays, when you’re running around like a headless chicken the same cup of chai (or cha as my maternal grandmother would say) when multiplied by three or sometimes four helps keep your sanity intact. In short, a cup of chai simply makes one’s life better. As for me, I’ve always been more fascinated…

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2960 0

Dhoti, remixed!

Fashion, Fashion Fry

It was some time ago that I first fell in love with the dhoti silhouette. Slightly oversized and breezy, this street-style trend spells ease and effortless chic. And in the last few Indian fashion week seasons I was happy to see that the spotlight was back on the humble garment. The Indian drape stepped up to a completely new level of fusion: think voluminous pant silhouettes in breezy fabrics teamed with Italian cut tuxedos and elaborate dhoti dresses with rich stiffened pleats.

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Looking for Alaska

The Globe & The Gully

What defines a holiday? Being wheelchair bound, it means meeting or even exceeding my limits. I seek out unique destinations, luxurious hotels, diverse cuisines and exciting activities. From start to finish, Alaska had all the ingredients and flexibility I look for and is now my favourite destination of the many I’ve visited.

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Hawa Hawai!

Bollywood, Nostalgia

Which version of the song, Hawa Hawai do you like more? The one with Sridevi from Mr.India or this funky, new one? At present, we’re playing the Shaitan version, on loop. We can’t decide which one we love more.  

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Bulleh Shah in a modern avatar!

Bollywood, Over a cup of chai

Two individuals, one aim: to create echoes that resonate across cultural, racial and religious boundaries, transforming communities through happy, soulful music. Vocalist / audio engineer Hari Singh and trained Hindustani classical vocalist Sukhmani Malik describe their music as the translation of various cultural experiences into pure thought. Emanating from places deep within their hearts, the sounds are blissful.

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चाइ की दुकान

Food, Horn OK Please, Indian Belly

Masala chai…cutting chai… kadak chai…garam chai…chai malaai maar ke! You’re familiar with these sounds, aren’t you? You’ve heard them on childhood train journeys to the nanihaal(maternal grandparents’ home) orescapades to the mountains, saving yourself from sweltering summer heat. They’re the chants of tea sellers or chaiwallahs, emanating from stalls that dot the streets of urban and rural India. This beckoning is a charm, a talisman, bearing witness to our formative years.

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Don’t let this be my India

Angry Toot

A five-year-old girl was raped in my country. Each word is drenched in pain, shame, anger and misery. I usually steer clear of politics and the like – it’s never been my thing. But this, along with the ongoing violence against women… I now choose to raise my voice. Because I feel I must and because I know I can. And because if we don’t do it now, each and every time this happens… things may never change. We speak of equality and women’s rights. Yet, Sati is still practiced in parts of India. We are proud of our working,…

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Is a moustache a must for an Indian man?

Trumpet Lead

Most men recall the first shaving lesson they got from their dads as young boys with a sense of pride and nostalgia. The precise motions (top to bottom and never reverse, lest you want a rough stubble!), the shaving brush grooming and the final bite of the aftershave lotion were all a bonding process for sons and dads. For days after the first lesson, anxious dads would keep a wary watch on their sons, half afraid they would cut themselves up! It continues to be a lovely tradition with dads holding the hands of their sons as they walk the…

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