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Tracking the east

entertainment Updated: Nov 26, 2010 02:31 IST
Shruti Dargan
Shruti Dargan
Hindustan Times
Chattarpur

My tour from Chattarpur to Anand Vihar Metro Station was an adventurous one, not just because I had never explored this part of the city earlier, but because of all that I came across.

Tiring ride
The ride from Chattarpur to Rajiv Chowk, where I was required to change trains, took me longer than usual. Getting into the Anand Vihar-bound train was a daunting task, with too many people trying to board at the same time. Two guys actually got into a fist-fight over a seat.

Mixed feelings
The view from the metro — terraces with clotheslines and a fleet of stairs leading up to the terrace — reminded me of scenes from the movie Delhi-6. From Rajiv chowk, I reached Anand Vihar within 25 minutes. The station looked rather dirty as compared to the ones in south Delhi. With not much to do, I decided to go out and explore.

The token machines of two exit lanes got jammed, delaying my exit by five minutes. I noticed a counter just next to the exit lanes, selling tickets for the ongoing trade fair at Pragati Maidan, crowded by a lot of people.

Outside, I met Ram Avtar, a man who sells sev and bhel puri at his thela. Rickshaw-pullers tried to convince people to take a ride up to the nearby railway station. They told me about the four places nearby — a railway station, the inter-state bus terminal and the Pacific and EDM malls.

Hang out zones
The railway station and the bus terminal were busy and overtly crowded. So I moved ahead, hoping of seeing something better that would draw me back to this area. I reached the Pacific mall — it was at its flashiest best. The food court had food stalls from different states of India. It explains well why the mall is crowded at all times.

EDM mall too, has great stores, eating joints and fun zones but was less crowded. However, astrology seems to be a hit in the area. While the Pacific mall had a Horoscope Point, EDM had a similar entity called the Future Point. Also offering entertainment options like bumper cars and air hockey apart from the gaming kiosks, EDM mall makes for a cool hangout place too. I liked the malls and surely would be a frequent visitor to these malls.

Heard in the metro
Abey, ye metro kitna rukegi (Damn, how many times would the metro hault)
Bacche ki jaan lega kya
O god! kitni bheed hai!
Yes, yes, Pragati Maidan is the next stop
Look at what that guy is wearing... such a loser, man!

Reading in the Metro
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
A journalist is aided in his search for a woman who has been missing or dead.
The Goat, The Sofa, and Mr. Swami
A delightful and extremely hilarious story of Swami, an IAS and PA to PM.

Music in the Metro
Shirdi waali Sai Baba
Waada Raha (Khakhee)
Humko humein se churaalo (Mohabbatein)
Baby (Justin Bieber
)

Metro elsewhere
Moscow Metro
Opened in 1935, with one 11 km-line and 13 stations, it was the first underground railway system in the Soviet Union.
The Moscow Metro is the world’s second most heavily used rapid transit system after Tokyo’s twin subway.
The stations were designed and embellished by prominent Russian architects, artists and sculptors.
Currently, there are over 180 stations (including transition stations) of the Moscow Metro.
Tickets are available for a fixed number of journeys, irrespective of the distance travelled.

Report card -Anand Vihar Metro Station
Escalators- thumbs up
Clean toilets- thumbs down
ATM- thumbs down
Food joints- thumbs up
Spacious parking- thumbs up
Bookshop- thumbs up
Rickshaw stand- thumbs down
Pay phones- thumbs down

Metro diary
Metro friendship
Long time back, I was offered a Hindi version of the Bhagavad Geeta by an Iskcon Temple’s priest, while entering the Rajiv Chowk Metro station. I took it despite being a non-believer and decided to give it to someone who might read it. In the cabin, I found a boy, sitting near me, reading an English version of the Geeta.

I asked him if he wanted mine. He took it and then we exchanged our e-mail IDs and numbers. He became a good friend of mine later. This experience was indeed unique.

Vatsla, a Metro commuter