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The HT-Penguin Delhi bookshelf contest Winners

Here’s announcing — and congratulating — the three lucky winners. And lest we forget, the fact that all of them are Dilliwalas is purely coincidental!

delhi Updated: Oct 15, 2010 22:17 IST
Hindustan Times

Thanks to all 213 Delhi-lovers for participating in the contest and sharing with us ten reasons that make the city special for each one of them. We had a tough time picking the top three entries, nevertheless we thoroughly enjoyed the process. Here’s announcing — and congratulating — the three lucky winners. And lest we forget, the fact that all of them are Dilliwalas is purely coincidental!

Zehra Kazmi, Delhi,
believes that only in this city...
10. You can overhear aunties, pointing at uncles who enter the all-woman Metro coach, whispering loudly, “Ladies toh nahi dikhte!”
9. Can one enjoy a culinary exploration that starts with gol gappas, goes on to Chin-jabi ‘hakka noodles’, swims through butter chicken and ends with uber-chic frozen yoghurt.
8. Would a concerned police officer from Karkardooma call you to return a wallet you lost in Connaught Place.
7. Knowledge is a gateway to fun, to be sought in JNU dhabas and DU fests.
6. Would you find a shop with boards stating: ‘Saying ‘bhaiya, uss dukan mein sasta milta hai’ isn’t allowed’, ‘Saying bhaiya, final price bataiye’ isn’t allowed’ and ‘Asking ‘do loongi toh price kam karoge?’ isn’t allowed’.
5. Can you spot signboards that say, ‘Aleganse Beauty Saloone’ or ‘Ladys Forner Beauty Parlor’.
4. Do people throng to events like ramlilas and weddings all dressed up.
3. Can you be burnt to crisp under a hot sun, drowned in the onslaught of fiery rains and be frozen like an ice cream in a charming winter.
2. You can spend your whole life passing by the Qutub Minar and still get struck anew by its beauty one day.
1. Can you experience different cities, cultures, people, but with that rare zest for life that is truly Delhi.

First Runner-up
Brajendra Singh, Delhi,
on the options in the city, where...
10. If I want to end my life, I won’t have to waste money on pesticides, knives, etc. Just try crossing MB Road, India Gate roundabout or Ring Road between 8 and 9 pm.
9. There’s no dearth of lush green trees to answer nature’s calls.
8. Immaculately dressed, I can gatecrash into any wedding reception for a free meal.
7. I can always go late to office, blaming a road cave-in for the delay.
6. I don't need to wear a watch since it’s a Delhiite’s prerogative to be not punctual.
5. I can enjoy plenty of romantic candle-light dinners with my wife thanks to frequent power cuts.
4. Water comes erratically and is non-potable. So, with a clear conscience, I can restrict my liquid subsistence to beer.
3. I get plenty of time to meditate, as well as discuss maternal and sororal relations of my fellow drivers during endless traffic jams.
2. Working out doesn’t cost a penny as running from window to window, desk to desk and office to office to get a sarkari job done burns more calories than desired.
1. I will never starve. I can always get the job of digging up roads. Daily minimum wage of around R140 is sufficient for three hearty dhaba meals and a quarter bottle of desi plonk.

Second Runner-up
Gautam Banerji, Delhi
simply loves Delhi for...
10. Its Ramlilas and Dussehra celebrations, when Delhiites unite to celebrate the victory of good over evil.
9. Hosting the Commonwealth Games and making the nation proud.
8. The ittar-scented bylanes of Chandni Chowk, the cool comfort of the Metro, the air-conditioned DTC buses that have made commuting in Delhi delightful.
7. The Qutub Minar that stands tall and erect, reminding the world of the greatness of the city.
6. For its rich history and various historical monuments.
5. For its culinary wonders, what with papri chaats, tandoori chicken, sohan halwa and kulfis, which have made me a gourmand.
4. The beautiful dancing fountains of India Gate, which double the fun of eating an ice cream, aboard a paddleboat on the India Gate lake.
3. The beautiful tableaux in Republic Day parades that bring
out India’s spirit of unity in diversity
in its true sense.
2. The cerulean vacancy of the winter sky and the warmth of the winter sun.
1. Both order and disorder co-exist in Delhi, as exemplified by a pristine Lutyen’s Delhi on the one hand and bustling katras of old Delhi on the other.

First Published: Oct 15, 2010 22:15 IST