Sunday, March 10, 2019

Heritage walk in Pune

As of today this is what one gets to see of the famous bull and the golden plough which is supposed to be in the courtyard of Lal Mahal in Pune. The Lal Mahal itself is all barricaded and closed in the name of "restoration and renovation" I managed to get a part of the bull from a vantage point near the entrance. 

Did a Heritage walk in Pune this week and came to know about many things (and places) that existed in the city. The emphasis was more on the iconic women from the city who shaped Indian history.
Came to know about Queen Naganika. She was the first Indian female ruler to have coins to her name.
Inscriptions about her can be seen at Naneghat (near Junnar) 
The two silver coins dating back to the first century BCE have Naganika's name on it. Her name "Naganikaya" in Brahmi script is placed at the centre of the coin while the name of Satakarni (her husband) is placed below. 

Mastani (second wife of Maratha Peshwa Bajirao) lived in the north east part of Shaniwar Wada. It has a separate door and is named Mastani Darwaza. This tree just outside the Darwaza is huge and could probably tell the exact story of Mastani's short stay at Shaniwar wada.  

Another place we visited was the Bhausaheb Rangari's Bhavan. It was also a place where many freedom fighters met and stored weapons. The house was built in such a way that there were secret tunnels which would help the revolutionaries escape. 

This blue plaque identifies the residence of Dr Anandibai Joshi. 

She was the first woman from India who obtained a degree in Western Medicine. She died at an young age of 23 in 1887.

Anandibai Joshi graduated from the Woman's Medical College in Pennsylvania in 1886. All three completed their medical studies and each of them was the first woman from their respective countries to obtain a degree in western medicine.

On March 31st 2018, Google honored her with a Google Doodle to commemorate her 153rd birth anniversary.

Incidentally the Pune Bharat Gayan Samaj is housed in the same building which is more than a century old. 

Opposite this is the Pune Library, established in 1878 and the building still stands. 

Noticed some young artists trying to sketch these historical places. 

While doing the walk, we crossed the Mahatma Phule Mandai, which has been standing there for more than a century. 

I wonder if the boy still rings the bell every hour. Incidentally this boy's statute was installed after the tragedy in 1993 when 38 school kids lost their lives when their bus was hit by a train at an unmanned level crossing at Phursungi.  

The mandatory group picture of all who were enlightened by the walk. 

Made a short video showing all the stops that we took while walking.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

The Empress Garden

The landscaping was good and the evening light was perfect to capture this. 

Every time when I enter the Empress Garden (in Pune) I am in awe of this structure which must have been standing there for more than a century 

and so are these tall trees that are standing as a mute witness to all that is happening around it 

The flower show and the sale of the Garden items that is held every year had something unique this time and that is the landscaping of the place by Dr Krishna Chavan. Liked his concept of “Love Green Live Green”

One can’t miss the lavish spread of green with splashes of colourful flowers.

The perfect background  for selfie seekers. 

For a minute I thought that these are real flamingos   

There were other activities too like flower show competition and Bonsai display

This was organised by the Agri-Horticulture Society of Western India. You can have a glimpse of everything in this short video.
I was told that the exhibition and the sale will continue till 27th of January. 

Friday, January 18, 2019

Little Bridge

Like they say “If the packaging is right, half the work is done” I was impressed by the packaging of these products displayed in the shop Little Bridge 

Had been to this shop a few days ago and was impressed by the items that were on display. 

I noticed some products from Two Brothers Organic Farms.

This organization (Two Brothers) helps farmers in and around Maharashtra to produce farm products and diary products that are free of chemicals. They even go to the extent of using bullock carts in the farms (in place of polluting tractors and trucks) 

The price is also comparable, as I know the price of these cakes that are available in Pune. Good to know that Pune products are sold in Mumbai

I tried out some of these dhoklas and samoosa and I must say that the dhoklas were real soft and tasty. (I was told that they supply Parsee food too)

The Cheese Garlic Bread and the Choco Chip cookies were aesthetically displayed, and within easy reach of the customers.  

Located in a quite nice place, I found that the shop had opened early, even before the other shops opened in the area. 

The customers started trickling in and by the time I left I found that the shop was almost full.

The shop is funded by CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) Over the last decade the CSR has moved considerably from voluntary decisions at level of individual organizations, to mandatory schemes at regional, national and even transnational levels. 
Probably the CSR has seen something good in the Little Bridge as it helps many deserving people who man the shop as well as the suppliers.
 It is located in Bandra (Mumbai) and in case any one wants to reach them, they are available at +91 8928665818
The wall clock in the shop says it all, Attitude is everything