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Friday, Sep 20, 2019

Delhiwale: The instagrammable shop

All manners of used household equipment constitute this shop in Old Delhi which rightly calls itself Cheap Electricals.

delhi Updated: Jan 14, 2019 14:02 IST
Mayank Austen Soofi
Mayank Austen Soofi
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Manmohan Swaran is the owner of a shop called ‘Cheap Electricals’ on Old Delhi’s Ganj Meer Khan Street.
Manmohan Swaran is the owner of a shop called ‘Cheap Electricals’ on Old Delhi’s Ganj Meer Khan Street.(HT Photo )
         

The sight is more than merely amazing. It’s incredibly instagrammable. The entire store is crammed with used electricals as a kind of monument to our modern civilization.

All manners of used household equipment constitute this shop in Old Delhi which rightly calls itself Cheap Electricals.

“Junk, that’s what it is!” grins owner Manmohan Swaran. Over the years people have left behind their household appliances for repairs, and sometimes don’t return to pick things up.

In such instances Mr Swaran simply tosses the items behind him into what’s become a great pile.

Now a customer walks in to reclaim a repaired toaster, soon followed by a woman bearing a thermos that no longer keeps fluids warm. They both refer to Mr Swaran as Mannu Bhai, as he’s known here on Ganj Meer Khan Street.

Founded some 40 years ago, the shop’s huge collection of unclaimed electricals is a kind of testament to the bonds Mr Swaran has built up in the neighbourhood. Each discarded utensil in the giant pile is a souvenir from the household it has come from.

He himself lives in Patel Nagal in West Delhi, riding daily to the Walled City on his charmingly run-down scooter — which itself doesn’t seem out of place with the junk accumulated at the store.

Cheap Electricals, in its own way, is as awesome as any Walled City monument. Worth a visit if only to take photos.

First Published: Jan 14, 2019 14:02 IST