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Capturing the soul of Delhi through its people

Inspired by the Humans of New York photoblog, two young Delhiites have set out to capture the soul of the city through its people.

art and culture Updated: Apr 28, 2014 18:15 IST
Sahil Magoo

Acity of many cities, Delhi is a confluence of people belonging from diverse cultures and religions. It is not only the love for the city that connects its residents, but also their daily experiences that strengthens the bond. Sharing such moments on the social networking site Facebook is a page — Humans of New Delhi (HOND). Inspired by Brandon Stanton’s ­phenomenal Humans of New York ­photo-project that has spawned many such pages across the world, this page was ­founded last year on July 30 by Kriti Sharma, 25, and Rajib Saha, 27.

Talking about the initiative, Kriti says, "I had been following Brandon Stanton’s Humans of New York. With each passing day, my understanding of the various cultures of New York grew and so did my love and appreciation for its people. At the same time, I began to feel a void when it came to the city I lived in — New Delhi. When a couple of other ‘Humans of...’ pages sprung up, I wished and hoped that someone would start a similar page here, but to no avail. I thought I’d start my own page, but I just couldn’t gather the ­courage to embark on this ambitious project by myself. It changed when I met Rajib. He instantly picked up the idea, and his earnestness and belief in the project made me realise that we could actually do it." As for the motive behind creating such a page, Kriti says, "HOND is born out of a need to try and bridge the disconnect we feel as Delhiites. The aim is to connect to our fellow humans. I’m doing it so that I can understand what affects people, how each of us has been beautifully shaped by circumstances, how even the worst of circumstances ­produce the best of souls. In the ­process, we try to understand our ­fellow humans as ­complexly as ­possible because ­simplifying their experiences would not be fair."

And the team is pleasantly surprised with the response. "We realised that the youth of this city is far more ­positive than we believed. We also realised that the city is not half as hostile towards women as one thinks. Also, most people have no problem sitting down and ­discussing details of their lives ... all one has to do is listen," says Kriti.