INDIA’S UNCLE SAM

The United States of America’s ‘Uncle Sam’ with is top hat adorned with stars and stripes is rather famous across the globe.  But little is known of India’s own Uncle Sam, who came from a Parsi family and was once the most powerful man in our country.  Popularly known as Sam Bahadur, he had made […]

THE TREASURES OF MEHRAULI

The Mehrauli village of Delhi is most famous for the tallest rubble minaret in world, the mighty Qutub Minar. In our November 2013 edition of the NRI Achievers, we had told you the untold story of the Qutub Minar.  In other issues, we have also shared with you the story behind Mehrauli’s ‘Phoolwalon-ka-Sair’ and some […]

1948 – THE FALL OF HYDERABAD

20th August, 1671.  A son was born to Aurangzeb’s favoured general Ghaziuddin Khan Siddiqui Feroz Jung, who had commanded the siege and capture of the famous Golconda fort.  The child was named ‘Mir Qamaruddin Khan Siddiqui,’ and grew up to serve his emperor as well.  In 1724, Qamaruddin was sent to the Deccan to replace […]

JIM CORBETT THE TIGER HUNTER WHO TURNED THEIR SAVIOR

This July we celebrate the birthday of a fearless hunter who turned a saviour for tigers in India. I came across this story while I was sitting on the shore of the Kosi River of Uttarakhand.  A few days ago, I had gone to the Namah Resorts in Dhikuli, at Jim Corbett Park. I was […]

Following the Formless – Nirankari

Recently, Nirankari Mission was all over the news channels as head of Nirankari Mission, Nirankari Baba Sant Hardev Singh jee met with an accident and left this mortal world. For many, this was the first time that they heard the word ‘Nirankari’. Yesterday, while I was conducting my regular workshop, an elderly gentleman walked up […]

The Parliament Of India The Case of The Missing Third House

Many of us often take a lot of our heritage for granted, especially if they are live buildings and ensembles like those in Lutyen’s Delhi – the tiered wedding-cake like Parliament house being no exception. However, stories and events, trivia and little known factoids about this extraordinary heritage architectural ensemble bang in the middle of […]

LOHRI…. CELEBRATING WINTER SOLSTICE

As the Sun travels towards south on the celestial sphere, the Dakshinayana Period is observed as per ancient Indian philosophy. This period starts from Karka Sankranti (Cancer) on July 16 and goes till January, which is celebrated as Makar Sankranti (Capricorn). In western world, this transition from Dakshinayana to Uttarayana is known as the Winter […]

OM NAMAH SHIVAY

Hinduism, one among the oldest practised religions of the World, with no single founding father, is the third largest religion on this planet. It never started as an organized religion and has no founding father. It was more of a lifestyle, which hailed from the Indus Valley Civilization. As people started migrating from one place […]

SAMARKAND TAKING INSPIRATION FROM INDIAN ISLAMIC ARCHITECTURE

When Tamerlane aka Taimur was done and finished with largest mass-massacre in known and recorded Indian history, he decided to do some site-seeing.  He explored the Mosques built by Khan-i-Jahan Junan Shah Tilangani in Delhi during the reign of Feroz Shah Tughlaq. After admiring Jami Masjid of Kotla-i-Ferozshahi near present day Old Delhi, he went […]

WE ARE WERE 'ONE' PHOOLWALON KI SAIR

When the Mughals conquered India, they adopted Indian lifestyles and respected the religions of the locals.  From Akbar offering Chhatar to Hindu temples and donating land for the Golden Temple of Sikhs, each Mughal emperor was involved in some or the other interfaith activity. Communal unity was at its peak then with many Jain, Hindu […]

CHATURANGA, CHAUPER AUR PACHEESI

We have grown up playing Chess, Snakes & Ladders (Chutes & Ladders) and Ludo.  Have you ever wondered how these games came to existence ?  We tend to take common items for granted, even when we are aware that every item in our day-to-day life has some reason for its existence.  I have been working […]

Origin of Delhi and the Tomars

With 444 years of rule, the Tomars were the longest ruling Dynasty of Delhi. The Mughals were to follow with 316 years and then the Mamluks with 98 years of rule. Still, no one ever talks about these magnificent settlers of the Capital of modern India. NRI Achievers brings you a feature on the lesser […]

The Last Hindu Emperor of Delhi

Google the above title text and all you will find is “Prithvi Raj Chauhan.” While Prithvi Raj Chauhan was a brave fighter indeed and a noble emperor of Ajmer and Delhi, who ruled from 1169 CE to 1192 CE and the tales of his bravery are common folklore among Indian families, very few historians and […]

The Ubiquitous SAMOSA

I had once gone to the India Habitat Centre to deliver a lecture on heritage, and just as I had finished my talk, a person approached me and congratulated me for the way I had presented the history of Delhi. He gave me many points to ponder on, and asked if I would like to […]

Diwali Beyond Lord Rama

The famous festival of Diwali (Deepavali) is said to be celebrated because on this auspicious day, Lord Rama of Hindu Mythology returned from a 14 year long exile, during which he also won the battle against King Ravana of Lanka. Lord Rama’s subjects celebrated his return by lighting up earthen lamps. With time, as the […]

GOD’S HEXAGRAM

The Hexagram, or the six pointed star is a common symbol and popular by the name of Megan Davidor the Star of David. It is a considered to be a Jewish symbol and can be seen in the Flag of Israel. History tells that in Judaism, the symbol fi rst appeared in a Synagogue of […]

Sol Die, The Day of The Sun

In many parts of the world, every week has a day of rest from the most mundane task of living, namely, ekeing out a livelihood. That day of rest is also a day to congregate, to reflect upon one’s life, to socialise, and to indulge in play, activities that entertain and amuse, and generally relax […]

GOING, GOING… NOT GONE! AUCTION OF THE TAJ MAHAL

“Henceforth, let the inhabitants of the world be divided into two classes – them as has seen the Taj Mahal; and them as hasn’t.” -Edward Lear In my series of articles on the Taj Mahal, I am going to introduce you to an interesting episode of our history, where one of the British appointed Governor […]