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Delhiwale: From Kashmir, with hope

Sajid Ali and Qaiser Andrabi, both graduates in Mass Communication say Delhi is more than a mere change from their picture-perfect Kashmir, with its bracing climate.

delhi Updated: Sep 22, 2017 12:48 IST
Mayank Austen Soofi
Mayank Austen Soofi
Hindustan Times
Sajid Ali and Qaiser Andrabi at their room in Govindpuri.
Sajid Ali and Qaiser Andrabi at their room in Govindpuri.(Mayank Austen Soofi / HT Photo)

These cheerful blokes from Kashmir have landed in Delhi for the very same reason so many others are inevitably drawn to our capital — jobs.

No luck so far. But Sajid Ali and Qaiser Andrabi, both graduates in Mass Communication, are more than hopeful. As roommates in the shantytown of Govindpuri, they’re shooting out resumes from their laptops like there’s no tomorrow.

They tell us that Delhi is more than a mere change from their picture-perfect Kashmir, with its bracing climate. “I vividly recall my arrival here, back in May,” says Mr Ali, “the temperature was 46 degrees. It felt like I was sitting on the silencer of my car!”

Nor is grim Govindpuri in south Delhi quite the same as their Kashmiri hometown of Pulwama, “where everybody not only has a big house but also a private garden. Ours is now blooming,” Mr Ali says.

Well, um, why don’t they just go back? Laughter! Mr Andrabi points out: “We can get far better salaries in Delhi than anything we can hope for back home….”

They do take time to explore the capital as an escape from the cramped room where we spot books by Mirza Waheed and Paulo Coelho beside their floor mattresses.

No bed. No TV. “But, hey, we’ve got the Internet!”