Jaat Weddings (AUDIO)

Weddings and their preparation times are always fun. Specially when it comes to Jaat weddings there is so much that people can be up to. I have tried to bring the peculiar dialect used by Jaats during their conversation with each other. The kind of music perhaps adds to entertainment and in turn audio.

Mixed response of Jamia students on Canteen food

Jamia Campus canteens provide food, snacks,beverages and are funded by the Central government. According to the students, the canteen is the last option that they have for lunch, some are simply not happy with the meals. While others say that this is the best place for snacks and tea time in the evening but not for lunch as the canteen is unhygienic ,lacks variety and not good in quality, like just non-veg food is available but no option for vegetarians.

Following are the views of the students of Jamia Millia Islamia University:

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By Danish Khan and Hina Fatima Khan in New Delhi


Traders draw ire after NDMC plans to revamp Khan Market

After a meeting between two traders association on the revamp of Khan Market, the first-floor association approved the proposal presented by New Delhi Municipal Council, the ground-floor traders’ association said it is not feasible. It has submitted its objections to NDMC.  According to the association of the ground floor traders, it will only add to their woes but do no good. While some opine that the market does not need any redevelopment proposal as such, it is good in its current status. According to them, they don’t want the same mess as was there in Connaught Place. Here we have an account of what people have to say about the revamp of Khan Market and speak about their fondest memories at Khan Market.

Presenter at Doordarshan – Aditi Mukherjee

Buyer – Alishba Khanam

Frequent visitor or buyer – Daniel

Shopkeeper – Mahesh

Visitor – Magho


Shreyas – College Student

Cell towers and its health hazards in residential areas

Cell Tower

Cell Tower

“I never knew that our house falls under the red zone of radiation levels from cell tower. It’s life threatening, a few days ago my cousin Samarth complained of hearing loss, at first we couldn’t understand and took it lightly but now he is diagnosed with acoustic neuroma (a cancer of inner ear). I have been living here since childhood, the day cell towers were erected in this sector it has added to our woes, says 22 year old Karan Keelor of Noida Sector 19.” Electromagnetic radiation emanating from the cell towers adversely affect the human body. A strong correlation exists between the radiation levels and health problems.

Cell phones an indispensable part of human life have not only revolutionized the communication process but also pose severe health threats to human lives. Towers erected nearby the residential areas emit large amounts of radiation that proves to be major reason of poor health. These harmful radiation are carcinogenic (having the potential to cause cancer). According to a 2011 World Health Organisation Fact Sheet, a person using mobile phone 30-40 cm away from the body while texting and using internet will have reduced exposure to radio-frequency fields than someone holding the handset close. Voices of raised against the indiscriminate installation of cell phone towers in residential areas but about 50 percent of the 600 odd-towers are in residential areas.

In a bid to reduce the alleged health risk of exposure to radiation from these towers the Noida Authority has decided to relocate over 300 cell towers away from the residential areas in the city.  The Greater Noida Authority though has relocated many towers to green belts earlier. A separate policy focusing on the installation of mobile towers would be formulated for the city. Under this policy permissions regarding the cell towers and their set up would fall. Its not only Karan but his mother also who is diagnosed with ovarian cancer and the cause proved to be cell tower radiation. Constant headaches, high blood pressure, clinical depression are some of the ill effects of the radiation emitted by cell towers. The electromagnetic waves emitted by cell towers travel in a cascading umbrella formation, making strongest impact a few hundred meters away from the tower. This means that the building on which the tower is erected is relatively safe.

Instead of adding more low-power towers the telecom companies are adding to the power to cater the needs of the fast growing consumer base. Many studies have also confirmed a direct link between proximity to cell towers and acoustic neuroma. Rebutting the statements made by the concerned authorities, Vikram Sharma a 28 year old professional says,” this tower has been here for the past 7 years, there is no rescue from its ill effects.” After all griping and applications we found that these officials have been flouting norms. In 2010 the authority had sealed more than 200 towers, saying their installation was a commercial activity which disrupted mobile connectivity in the city. The authorities had to de-seal the towers after the service providers reached court.

Firecrackers street in Chandni Chowk

Chandni Chowk the moonlit square, one of the oldest markets in Old Delhi can be seen studded with different shops of fire crackers on its streets. The congested streets are always discharged with crowd and vendors. Big festivals like Diwali adds to the crowd and beauty of this place. Different kinds of crackers of different size,shape from all over the country can be bought here.

Were metro officials incognizant of the sinking metro station?

Repair Work in Progress at Noida City Center Metro Station

Repair Work in Progress at Noida City Center Metro Station

NOIDA, October 19: The deflection in one of the cantilever arms ( projecting horizontal beam fixed at one end only ) of the Noida City Center metro station sparked major worries for the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, DMRC, with reports of the platform sinking and cracks appearing on it prompted it to constitute a high level investigation committee to look into the matter.

The committee comprising of Sh. Sahadeva Singh, Chief Project Manager, Sh. Surya Prakash, Chief General Manager/Civil and Sh.A.K.Gupta, Chief General Manager/Planning was instituted following the detection of a deflection during routine inspections of the platforms. What’s amusing is that  the construction company M/S Gammon and metro officials remain elusive on the reason behind the unprecedented sinking of the platform. The repair work on pillars number 174 and 185 will continue for two – three weeks. Ashutosh, a metro official (real name not used as requested) says that there have been formidable findings on account of negligence and jobbery by the metro officials and Gammon collectively.


  • The detailing of reinforcement as provided in the approved drawing has not been completely adhered to by the execution team of the contractor.
  • This aspect was also not verified by the DMRC engineer who failed to detect the lapses before allowing further casting of the girder.
  • Responsibility for ensuring work as per drawing is with design and building contractor which was M/S Gammon India Ltd -JMC JV and with M/S Arch Consultant, as the  design consultant.
  • Action against contractor will be as per the terms of contract since liability lies with the contractor.

The findings of the Enquiry Committee were accepted by DMRC’s MD Sh.  Mangu Singh and based upon the findings, he has ordered the suspension of two DMRC engineers (one Junior Engineer and one Assistant Engineer, now working as Executive Engineer) with immediate effect. DMRC will be taking up these engineers as per the organization’s disciplinary and appeal procedures (D&AR). But there are other sensitive details which have not been divulged and not covered therefore. There has been some seepage on Platform no.1, it was only after the crack revelation that passengers got to know about the cracks in the pillars but before the routine inspection there was no such information, this shows how the safety of around 70,000 commuters was compromised. Not only this but severe cases of jobbery surface up after this crack finding, the repairs which involve strengthening of the pillars by high grade steel rods (made of steel and titanium) are only being done now, what about the construction company Gammon, was it incognizant of such negligence ? How could a structure built only 4 years back develop such structural problems? And the DMRC has yet to answer the mysterious sinking of this platform.

To ensure that this type of failure doesn’t happen again in the construction monitoring methodology adopted by DMRC, the DMRC MD, Singh has also ordered that in future before any concreting is done in such cases, photographic evidence of the material used beforehand should be kept on the record to reinforce the checking process.

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Artists of Kathputli Colony

The tinsel slum of Kathputli Colony in West Delhi shelters the ancient folk art. Various artists ranging from puppeteers, magicians, acrobats , jugglers ,singers and street performers reside here in dingy clusters. Over 900 families have been living here for several years and earning their livelihood through displaying the Indian folk art. A conglomeration of traditional artists and young acrobats makes it the best place to enjoy these national cum international artists.

5th September 13′ Photo: Hina Fatima Khan, Kathputli Colony, Shadipur New Delhi

Treasures of Artefacts and Antiquity

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In shop no. 50 of Hauz Khas Village a lady sits all six days of the week except for Tuesdays. Cottage of Arts and Jewels is owned by her, she is a designer of all types of jewellery .  Here I present a collection of artefacts restored by her. Mrs. Kusum Jain Designer by Profession has amassed large collections of old movie posters, printing blocks,textiles and lot more. Out of all the main attractions were the fabrics with needle work.  

Kusum has this incredibly traditional Gold embroidery a broad laced fabric with some needle work of silver in it. It gripped me completely and it was then when I began asking her about what had prompted her to collect these?  She then divulged all from the genesis till today. Kusum’s father Mr. K.l. Goyal  was a businessman in old textiles. She is willing to disclose what all she has to share.
A motley collection ranging from textiles , jewellery, painting , tribal arts to match stick boxes made of tin. Named as cottage of Arts and jewels , Kusum As one of the founding members of Hauz Khas Village Market had opened the very first shop of antiquity in the HKV around 25 years ago. It was in the 1980s when designer boutiques of Bina Ramani and Rohit Bahl had opened.  According to Kusum there were 7 show rooms of art and craft in Delhi then. She was born in Chandni Chowk , her grandfather Kishan Chand Goyal owned Minerva Cinema Hall from where she used to gather the movie posters. 
Hers was a relatively advance family who allowed their daughter to pursue the designing course which then  was not considered much coveted in those times but for Kusum this was what she wanted to be – A Designer. 
 She had this habit of collecting any item that evoked some interest in her.  It was a rewarding visit that enriched me with some of the very Interesting facts as stated below :

– it was after Lagaan movie that French people developed interest in buying the Indian traditional jewellery and other antiques. Muzaffar Ali , an Indian film maker would visit the shop to find some inspiration for the stories to write. 

 – It was a tradition in Hindu Baniya family to bestow their daughters with Kheemkhaaf Lehenga which is passed from generations to generations. 
-There was a time when Lata Mangeshkar was paid Re.5 for her singing.

– Has been interviewed by Grenanda in 1990 TV Broadcast. Cottage of arts and jewels also find a mention in Lonely Planet and German Guide Book. 

– Vaclav Havel President of Czech  Republic also paid a visit. 
– Kusum has been the jewellery designer for Rekha and Bahl for their respective ramp shows in Delhi. 
According to Kusum many foreigners patronise this shop , tourists from Europe, China,Switzerland , embassy diplomats also visit her to buy the displayed stuff. There are paintings and other cloth work which are on display but are not meant for sale. Though its a shop where you enter to buy what you might  like but I appreciated her for the manner in which the antiques were kept with utmost care.  According to Kusum ” not everything in this world has a price!”  This is my proud possession , there are some rare items which I can not even think of selling, she said. 
 “But I must say you seem to be curious Hina,  I mean what I have seen is no youngster is interested in knowing the past Indian culture which is extremely rich. It is of immense value to the present itself. You know my daughters are your age, I don’t remember any time or day when they would sit down and express their wish to enquire about this all. I lament to say that today’s  young souls have never been interested in knowing and understanding this business of artefacts. I just can’t get them at times, don’t they feel an urge to ransack what all our ancestors have left behind? How royal it was to wear Zarbaft ( shuttle woven fabrics, often made in colored silks and with or without gold and silver threads) in those days which would surpass all of your today’s Brands, she added. ” 
“You just cannot know everything through Wikipedia, one must search out for more interesting sources of information as their grandparents, they prove to be of much help. Since Elderly know a lot, they should be talked to, they need to be heard about the times  and differences surfaced today. They are easily available but never contacted by their grand children this is a predicament.” 

The intriguing Graffiti in MCRC Jamia



While roaming inside the MCRC campus I happened upon a secluded place opposite the canteen. There I saw a wall on which a spooky graffiti was being done. It intrigued me a lot and as I went closer to get a look at it, it read ” I am a Rider”. Banksy striked my mind, the famous UK graffiti artist who is predominantly known to have a contempt for the governing system there.

In the middle of it I saw a place where some taps suggested that it was marked for ablutions (Wazu) for those who have to offer prayer Namaaz. To my surprise there were the mats (ja Namaaz) spread out at a clean plane under tree shade.
Since I too offer the five times prayer a day, it surrounded me with a religious feeling that was exuded with affluence of spirituality that one attains by connecting to his / her god.

Though this is my first day in the college and I have almost taken a round inside the campus with some of my new colleagues during the breaks, but I would say that when I crossed this place it surrounded me with calmness. And is now close to my heart for not specifically two reasons but the solidarity and the calmness it had to offer, that it was the place of worship and is also has such a remarkable wall art which was accentuated with different spray colors on the wall.