Sukhkarta Dukharata

  Sukhkarta Dukhharta Varta Vighnachi || Oh Lord who provides Joy, takes away Sorrows, the destroyer of obstacles Nurvi Purvi Prem Krupa Jayachi || The lord who bestows love everywhere as blessings Sarvangi Sundar Uti Shendurachi || The lord who is smeared with lovely yellow-orange fragrance paste all over his body. Kanti Jhalke Mal Mukataphalaanchi..||…

Lord Krishna is Born

According to Hinduism, Krishna was the 8th avatar of Vishnu, and his birth marked the start of Kalyuga, the world we live in. Janmashtami or Gokulashtami, the birthday of Lord Krishna is celebrated with great devotion and enthusiasm in India. Per the Hindu calendar, this religious festival is celebrated on the Ashtami of Krishna Paksh or…

Transforming India

The first Prime Minister of independent India, Jawaharlal Nehru delivered the following speech to the Constituent Assembly of India in New Delhi on August 14 1947… Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially….

Old Meets New

This has been, by far, my most satisfying project to date. I wanted to recreate a Gothic style setting, with a modern twist. While I created the tables, chairs and the lamp stool, the candelabra, plates, spoons, forks and knives, bowls, pastry stand, lamp shade and food all are purchased accessories. Special thanks to suenosouvenir…

Happy Solar New Year

Now several people in a major part of India are oblivious to the fact that south India is made up of five states (Telangana, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala) with distinct languages, cultures and celebrations. While Ugadi marks the new lunisolar year in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, the same is celebrated as…

Vishu Kanni

Vishu Kanni is an important part of Vishu celebrations in all Mallu households. Being part Mallu (the one that comes from my father), Kanni is a part of the lunisolar new year celebration in my house too. Kanni literally means first view and is the first thing you open your eyes to on the auspicious…

Let Us Prosper

As I was born and brought up in Maharashtra, the Marathi harvest festival/new year (according to the lunisolar Hindu calendar) known as Gudi Padva is a celebration I look forward to. Padva in general means festival or celebration and the Gudi is a “flag”  of the Hindu god Brahma (Bhramadhvaj), who is believed to have created time and…

Holier Than Thou

Batashe ki Mala (these are just sugar cubes in a garland) is an integral part of the Holika Dahan (the holy fire that is lit before Rangapanchami or Holi festival). These are quite popular in Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. While playing Holi (with Gulaal or Vermilion), batasha-malas are said to ensure cordiality with brother and…

The Feast Is Laid

Golu or Kolu is a display of dolls on odd numbered steps or padis  depicting scenes from Hindu texts, royalty, weddings or everyday scenes. While the practice dates back to centuries, it is still a huge part of Navarathri celebrations in South India. Although I have lived in western India for most part of my…

The Merry Crowd

Pune is considered as the cultural capital of Maharashta. To see the city in its full festive glory you need to be there on the morning of Ananth Chathurdashi, or the tenth day of Ganesh Visarjan. With chants of ‘Ganapathi Bappa Moriya’, you will be greeted with the energetic beats of local bands called Dhol…