The gun was resting
after a heavy bout
at Bandra Bazar Road
thanks to a rainless drought ..
a condition hot humid making
diseases sprout ,,the filthiest
dirtiest bazar potholes dugouts
roads with open gutters
totally washed out
our neglected area
comes alive during election
time candidates humble
hand folded begging for votes
without their political clout
once elected they forget
us ..within and without
faces with a pout
the fish market has no fans
no ladies toilet you need
to check out . this time
too they will again see a rout
the junta does not forgive
bandra buzz bandra times
silently watch as beloved
bandra gaothans get
burnt out east indian
heritage charm forever
lost out ,,old people
talk about the good old
days when there was no
traffic you could easily
walk about ,,now hawkers
with their dadagiri .bakdas
illegally jutting out ....
bandra dreams fade out
a pain that spreads as
word of mouth ...
from the garbage dump of bandra bazar road
th filth the stench the muck you are part of our
cosmic bad luck .. vote or dont vote
we are badly stuck.. whether the knife
falls on the watermelon or the warermelon
falls on the knife ,, our collective destiny
is self destruct ,,politics our life has sucked
in silence our bitter half mutters . utters
Foodies that love to feast and eat
beyond caste color or creed
love ramzan precursor to eid
heading towards minara masjid
bohri mohalla or mahim dargah lane
zaika food aroma fragrance is
all you need ,, make merry
but the poor that watch you
eat gluttonously please
dont forget to feed ,,
the kids ecstatic burst crackers
to usher the moon of ramzan
howling cheering shouting
the beauty of the holy month
a month called ramzan
This is a picture of a grandchild trying to understand the complexities of human life on the streets and this is not about reciting Jack and Jill or Ba Ba Black Sheep , these were lessons tutorials in street photography ..
The mothers agony is hidden behind the veil , her misplaced motherhood , her starving womanhood ,,begging for victuals not just for herself her child but those at home ..Is she forced to Beg ,, God Alone knows I shoot dont ask questions I shoot puzzles you solve them at leisure .
These are my Bandra Blogs ,,and I am revisiting them adding another dimension , de saturating the color element adding austerity in terms of tonal values of life.
We will shoot the beggars this year too, beggar tears dont dry from one Ramzan to the next .. so from Ramzan in 2007 to Ramzan in 2014 there is not much change , the veil is the same only the f…
phir mudat bad
nazar aya ,garib
ne hath phailaya
khuda ne amir
ke ghar se garib
ke ghar khana
lo ramzan mubarak aya
ramzan mubarak aya
Ramzan is hope for beggars , and Muslim beggars like this bountiful month , I remember a beggar lady once told me why cant Ramzan last forever ,, the values of Ramzan should last forever , charity piety devotion dedication ,,
But Ramzan time you will find cheats with tiffin boxes , tempos blaring for charity and guys in skull caps knocking your door for Chanda Donation.. there may be a few genuine souls but very few ,,
And I shot captured the holistic power of this Holy Month , and this picture was shot on the first day of Ramzan many years back but does it matter and Marziya is now 6 ..it is her sister Nerjis soon to be 3 who shoots Muslim Beggars of Bandra.
I have cut down on shooting the foodlanes of Bandra hence I clubbed all my Ramzan sets like a collection from 2007 to 2014....
Ramzan is about the glimmer in a beggars eye , give food…
power lust and greed
killing fields , iraq syria
afghanistan dead bodies
evil needs ..on carrion
vultures feed as blood
mingles with dust
raping young women
part of their creed
the minarets the mullahs
all silent no fatwah
on their misdeeds
children of a serpent
seed within the silhouette
of darkness and yazid
I first met Appu at Chor Bazar he begged a few blocks away near the sweet shop close to Bohri Mohalla . and he sat here on Fridays before Namaz time , with a few Masjids o this road ..I came here those days to the street side Friday Chor Bazar flea market .
Initially when I shot his pictures , his guardians were upset thinking that I would sell his pictures to the foreign press make a lot of money giving them nothing but loose change.
I was hurt and was moving away when Appu called me apologized for his guardians behavior , and I was barefeet looked every inch a Malang.
We became good friends and I met him every Friday , but than he disappeared , and I stopped going to Chor Bazar completely .
I also shot him on Shabbarat night at Rehmatabad Shia cemetery..drenched in the rains ,,,begging with his sister .
i never saw him after this for a very long time ,,,
Than I met him accidentally sitting on the lane at Mahim that leads to St Michael Church , on Novena Wednesday,I gave him Rs 100 …
He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou find refuge: his truth is a shield and buckler.
I once had my workspace at St Peter Road close to St Peter Church Bandra and this is a road that is narrow , traffic from Bandra Bazar Road spills out at Bandra Hill Road near Balaji Restaurant , and traffic from Hill road takes this path as a short cut to Bandra Reclamation or Mount Mary.
This road borders the St Stanislaus grounds and the St Peter Church and against this wall you will find all the garbage of Bandra , it is garbage hotspot , those who drive by the ricksha throw out their garbage here , there is a spineless notice that says a Rs 10000 fine will be levied if you are caught throwing garbage has not stopped this menace..
By and large this is one of the filthiest lanes of Bandra perhaps even our MP and MLA s pass through this short cut off Baba Nagar....Brian of Bandra Speaker fame lives here , he is King of Speakers locally made and handcrafte…
I shoot pictures , as I see them eclipsed on the soul of my poetry , I shoot Hinduism pictorially but I have limited knowledge , so for my foreigner friends followers I borrow text from Hindu blogs .
I have been shooting Pitru Paksha or Pitru Visajan since many years at Banganga Tank Walkeshwar .
I try not to miss it for two reasons , one I like Banganga , and secondly I like shooting street barbers , and mind you this event where the North Indian migrant from Uttar Pradesh comes in hordes to Banganga to appease his dead ancestors and participates in religious tonsure , shaving his scalp , beard , armpit , even nails of his fingers are clipped , and barbers are here in large numbers , even those guys wanting to make a fast buck become barbers for a day, cutting up the North Indian migrant badly ,,
The puja performers are predominantly North Indian Brahmins , the puja articles are sold by the Maharashtrian local ladies the pindis etc,,
The Banganga residents local leaders try their ut…
For my Friend Hassan Ali Shirazi
every morbid minute
second every horrid
hour ..held me captive
deathless .. my life
from one station
to the next station
of the cross in abysmal
mess ..i was a wanderer
who lost his own address
was it my dead mother
in an angels dress
not white pitch black
her silhouette i tried
to caress ,, she whispered
hold on for a while
dont get stressed
in the womb of
you were blessed
the heart is a stalker
lives and destroys
its own nest ..
i heard a whimper
in my chest ,,
the mind is a devils
workshop even at rest
One thing if you love shooting faces , people , beggars , than the Kumbh is the best place to hone your skills as a street photographer.
And if you love shooting rituals , customs monks Sadhus Nagas and Aghoris and Tantrics than Kumbh is in your backyard.
And if you befriend a good Sadhu , from a reputed ashram, than it becomes all the more easier.
When I shot the Nasik Kumbh I did not know anybody , no contacts nothing , but than I met Shri Vijay Giri Triveni from Juna Akhara who has his ashram near Film City Mumbai I became his friend stayed with him at Sadhugram Trimbakeshwar on the eve of the Shai Snan shot the ling kriya , sadhus pulling a car with their penis ,,
I could not accompany him to the Shai Snan Trimbakeshwar tank but pushed my way through and shot part of it ,,seems a long time now .
And so the contact that I built at Nasik helped me shoot the Maha Kumbh, and I did not want to shoot the Maha Kumbh as a photographer so I became a part of them.. on the Basant Panchmi …
hung from a tree
stare ..dead they
are still scarred
silent ..a pain
with you they
share ...a father
i am sure you
do care ..
by cosmic fate
are not raped
what they wear
boys will be boys
even angels fear
to dare ..
on a winter cold morning
on the banks of the ganges
a naga guru pensive sad
i shot all alone in a crowd
flooded by old memories
of earlier kumbhs agony
ecstasy of his thoughts
i tried to capture decipher
each one of them in the
fishermans net i caught
at that very hallowed
solemn spot ..
a muslim photographer poet
held by a slender thread in a
cosmic plot ..overwrought
his cultural inheritance that
had pulled him from mumbai
his jouney into a saffron world
of vermilion tiny dots the chant
of har har mahadev from the
soul of his camera on to your
hearts he bought .amrit nectar
of humility humanity as offerings
from his guru he got ..for once
his caste color creed he forgot
shot after shot after shot..stealing
curds from Krishnas pot ,,,,
Basant Panchami Shahi Snan Maha Kumbh.the winds whispered beggar
poet ,,once home forget me not ,,,
we are born we die become air
fire water wind ..mankinds lot .
On this auspicious God sent Day while heading towards the banks of the Ganges for the Royal Bath or Shahi Snan , the Naga Sadhus are over excited , some of them high in spirits , rushing adrenalin , and if you are not cautious you can be attacked by a few volatile hot headed sadhus , either with their sticks or even the swords or trishul..perhaps because some press photographer , or foreign photographer steps in their way making them all the more agitated .
As I was dressed in white and looked like a Sadhu I saved a lot of unwary photographers from getting beaten..but than the photographers the crowds and the stupid cops of UP are over excited too, the cops have no inkling about handling the Naga Sadhus , they are abusive rude and insulting to the foreign photographers ..and we talk of Devo Atithi Bhava..there is no Press Stand here at the Sangam , preferential treatment for VVIP photographers is possible , you have to pull strings in high places .
kehte hain aurat ko devi
karte hain uska gang rape
darakt par usko phansi dekar
karte hain use pesh..
going to the dogs ..
womens safety in unruly
uttar pradesh ..tears on
the soul of womanhood
on our bharat desh..
in rape van winklish stupor
somnolent beneath the surface
Kumbh Mela is the greatest pilgrimage and festival in the Hindu religion. The event is a religious and cultural spectacle which occurs once in 12 years attracting participants from around the globe to take a dip in the holy waters of Ganga, Yamuna and the mystical Saraswati. Maha Kumbh Festival 2013 was one of the biggest congregations in the history of mankind.
When Guru (Jupiter) and the Sun are in the zodiac sign Leo(Simha Rashi), the Kumbh is celebrated in Trimbakeshwar, Nashik.
Next Kumbh Mela will be held at Nashik in year 2015.
Nashik Maha Kumbh Mela 2015
Nasik Kumbh Mela
The Kumbh Mela is the most eventful and significant spiritual get-together for Hindus in India. It is held once in every Twelve years. at Four important pilgrim centers take turns to host it. These are Nasik, Allahabad, Ujjain and Haridwar. Every 12th year, the Kumbh Mela is held on a grand scale at each above cities. This grand celebration is called Puran Kumbh.
I wear only black, and I had no other dress in my suitcase , so my Guru borrowed 2 white dhotis for me , and I wore my leopard print vest and walked towards the Sangam on the Chant of Har Har Mahadev .
15 Feb freeing cold winter chill , and I took a dip with my Naga Guru , a sublime experience as a humanbeing and as a photographer.
And the Naga Sadhu next tome thought I was a Sadhu too, but I kept up the pretense of being Ashok Bharti the name my Guru called me on such charged occasions..
libaas hai phata hua, ghubaar mein ata hua tamaam jism e naazneen, chida hua, kata hua yeh kaun zeewaqaar hai, bala ka shahsawaar hai ke hai hazaaron qaatilon, ke saamne data hua yeh bil yaqeen Hussain (A.S.) hai, Nabi(SAW) ka noorey ain hai ke jiski eik zarb se, kamaal’e fann e harb se kai shaqi girey huey, tarap rahe hain karb se ghazab hai teighay do-sarr, ke eik eik waar par uthi sadaa’e "alamaan", zabaan e sharq o gharb se yeh bil yaqeeN Hussain (A.S.) hai, Nabi(SAW) ka noorey ain hai yeh kaun haq parast hai, maey redha se mast hai ke jiske saamn’e koi, buland hai na pust hai udhar hazaar ghaat hai, magar ajeeb baat hai ke eik se hazaarha ka hausla shikast hai yeh bil yaqeen Hussain (A.S.) hai, Nabi(SAW) ka noorey ain hai aba bhi taar taar hai, to jism bhi figar hai zameen bhi hai tapi hui, falak bhi shola baar hai magar ye mard e teigh zann, ye saff shikan, falak figan kamaal e sabr o tandehi se mahwe kaarzaar hai yeh bil yaqeen Hussain (A.S.) hai, Nabi(SAW) ka noorey ain hai dilawari mein f…
I met this humble soul when I took a bus for Shastri Nagar Bus Depot ,, Bus No 356 .
He sat besides me at close of our journey and we were talking about the heat humidity and a rainless Mumbai,,
Than I asked him how many kids he had he said three , the eldest a daughter was doing her MBBS , and was going to become Doctor ,,he has two daughters one son and all his savings part of his Provident Fund he had utilized for the furtherance of their higher education.
And he is a migrant from Uttar Pradesh but he spoke chaste Marathi and had made Mumbai his home..
His name is Vaidya Panday I think as I am bad with names numbers , and I shoot stories of humility like this..
And in the bus you meet all kinds of people , drunks crazies, fighter cocks , nagging women waiting to get into a fight at the drop of a coin , but he has to remain polite cool and he is a Hindu, the guy who was driving the bus was a skull cap bearded Miya and both got along well .
I had shot the Nasik Kumbh, but the Maha Kumbh was a different ballgame this was Uttar Pradesh I was miles away from Mumbai and this was a huge Kumbh that had come after 144 years ..
And the man in the picture made it possible for me , he made me a Sadhu tto shoot the Sadhus ,,he is the Naga Guru on whose invitation I came to absorb the cosmic colors of the Kumbh.
He is a teacher who gave up domestic life to become a Naga Sadhu born and bred in Karnataka he made the jungles his home at Flim City Mumbai.
He is an artist very good at drawing , he used to draw Muslim Holy Places on the floor close to Haji ali Dargah and earn alms , till a humble Muslim gave him Rs 500 and told him that people stamp on it and it desecrates a thought .. he stopped drawing completely.
He used to beg on the mountains close to Haji Malang but was robbed of his belongings , he saw tough life .. but he respects all Faith quotes from the Holy Koran.. and when I met at Nasik Kumbh his driver was a Muslim..
The origin of Kumbha Mela lies in the beautiful story of the time when the gods and demons churned the ocean in search of the nectar of immortality.
The fight between good and evil has existed from time immemorial. According to the story, the demons were always fighting with their brothers, the gods. However, the gods did not want to fight; they remained peaceful and calm. This did not deter the demons from killing them, though. Hence, the forces of good were falling to the forces of evil. One day, the devas went to Lord Brahma and said, “We are losing so many of our brothers and sisters in the never-ending war with the demons! If this continues, none of us will be left. Please help us!” Lord Brahma told them to go to Lord Vishnu.
Lord Vishnu listened to their story and sympathetically responded, “If you churn the great milky ocean, you will find a gold pot of nectar. He who drinks this nectar will be blessed with the boon of immortality. However, you are not strong enough …