Tag Archives: Indian

Views of Nanda Devi and other Himalayan peaks from Berinag

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During the initial days of the Raj, Britishers were not allowed to buy land in Kumaon. In 1827, a Dr. Royale petitioned the British Government to allot a vast area of non-farming land in Kumaon to Europeans for tea gardening. In 1837 the British Parliament passed a bill allowing Europeans to keep private property in India and Lord Baton, the then commissioner of Kumaon ordered that hilltops with suitable climatic and soil conditions be given free of cost to Britishers for tea gardening as some people had found tea plants growing naturally in these areas. Thus started the tea gardens of Kumaon.

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The White Throated Tits – A Painting (Acrylic on Canvas) 15″ x 18″

White Throated tits SOM_4536 headingIt was a crispy cold December day. I was on an assignment, to photograph the Forest Rest Houses of Uttarakhand. After photographing the Janaki Chatti Forest Rest House I had decided to trek up to Yamunotri. Although the pilgrimage season was over and the shrine would be closed, I was curious to visit the source of the mighty Yamuna.
After a long and steady walk I was at the highest point of the trail. The track passes through a very old oak forest, crosses a ridge and then descends to the Yamunotri shrine. The forest was silent and the birding had been quite slow.

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The Red-headed Bullfinches – A Painting (Acrylic on Canvas) 15″ x 18″

Bull finchesSOM_4533 headerIt was the beginning of the monsoon season. We were birding along the Taluka – Naitwar road, a few kilometers from the Naitwar village, in the Govind National Park (Uttarakhand). Birding was slow, possibly due to the intermittent showers we had been having throughout the day. We were walking along a stretch of the road that travels through a nice broadleaved forest. The shade of the great trees made the forest floor quite dark.

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Khajuraho, the jewel in the heart of India


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The temples of Khajuraho were built by the Kings of the Chandela dynasty during the 10th and the 11th century CE. The building of these temples started almost immediately after the Chandelas came into power. Surviving temple inscription suggest that many of the currently existing temples were completed between 970 to 1030 CE.

The temples are made of very good quality sandstone, with a granite foundation that is usually concealed. The builders didn’t use mortar: the stones are put together with mortise and tenon joints and they are held in place by gravity. This form of construction requires very precise joints. The columns and architraves were built with megaliths that weighed up to 20 tons.

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The Pink City of Jaipur – An architectural portfolio : Part II

IMG_4441 headerThe pink city of Jaipur is unique in that it is the only pre-modern Indian city that was built according to a master plan, in one go. The walled city of Jaipur still retains the distinct architectural character imparted by its unique heritage, and it still is a photographer’s dream come true.

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Birding in the Raksham Chhitkul Wildlife Sanctuary, Baspa Valley, Kinnaur

A tributary of the Sutlej, the Baspa river originates at a point near the tri-junction of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Tibet. It flows due west for about 60 kilometers before joining the Sutlej at Kharcham. This is the Baspa valley.

A part of the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, the Baspa valley lies in the lap of the great Himalayas. Sangla is its largest town, and therefore the Baspa valley is sometimes also referred to as the Sangla valley.

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Exploring the Zanskar Valley

It was late in September 2011. I was in Leh on a dream assignment. The assignment was open ended. I was to make my own itinerary and travel to places of my choice at my own pace. The idea was to make a nice portfolio of images from Ladakh. I was alone in my trusty Bolero 4×4 jeeep and I had already covered the main Indus valley and the Nubra valley.

I was planning to leave for Zanskar when, I came to know that my friend Tribhuvan was in Leh. We met at his favourite restaurant for dinner. When he told me that he and his friend, Charles, were also planning to go to Zanskar, I proposed a joint “expedition” to Zansakar.

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Looking for Argali (Marco Polo Sheep, Ovis Ammon) in Tso Kar

Kiangs in a huddle

While in Leh, in September 2011, during a chance meeting with an officer from the Forest Department, I asked him whether it was possible to see wild Argali (Marco Polo sheep, Ovis Ammon) in Ladakh. It won’t be easy, he said, but it is possible. He told me that there was a small population of Marco Polo sheep in the Tso Kar Wildlife Sanctuary. Numbering about 150, this flock lived in the northern regions of the sanctuary. But, he added, the Argali were very shy and difficult to locate.  He said it might be a good idea to look around for the Marco Polo sheep in the Tso Kar wildlife sanctuary on the way back to Manali.

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Jal Mahal – Jaipur

The Jal Mahal (literally “Water Palace”) is a beautiful Mughal-Rajput style palace located in the center of the Mansagar lake a few kilometers to the north of the city of Jaipur. Designed a pleasure resort, the Jal Mahal is an approximately 60m square multistory building which has chhatris on each corner. When the lake is full only the top floor remains above the water level and the Palace can only be reached by boat. The terrace has a typical Charbagh style Mugal garden. Located on the tourist artery, the Jaipur – Amer road, Jal mahal is one of the iconic sights of Jaipur.

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Moods of Shakti – Portraits of Indian women

“Moods of Shakti” is a tribute to the epic struggles and the eventual triumph of ordinary Indian women. Loosely translated, “Shakti” means power or energy in Hindi. “Shakti” is also the name of the divine female principle which provides energy to the whole universe.

This gallery houses a collection of portraits of Indian women. These portraits attempt to capture the moods, from despair to hope and  joy, of Indian women in their daily struggles. A result of a long term project, this gallery contains images captured over the past decade from different parts of India.

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