A temple was being built in a town. There were many different workmen busy with their work. The masons were building the walls. The sculptor was finishing the idols. And the carpenters were making wooden frames from logs of wood.
August 5: A beggar is someone who is so poor that she has to beg people for money. For, she generally has little that belongs to her. No money to buy food, no proper shelter to live in, not even perhaps, two sets of clothes to wear.
In the village of Sholingur in Tamil Nadu, is a temple dedicated to the Hindu monkey god Hanuman. The temple is on top of a small hill. In and around the hill in the thick forest live a group of monkeys.
I saw it 23 years ago, but the incident is as fresh in my mind as if it happened yesterday. I was seven years old then and staying with my grandmother in Shahjahanpur, a sleepy little town in western Uttar Pradesh.
There was once a famous temple, high up in the hills of Assam. The priest of this temple was widely respected and known to be a great scholar. When he grew very old, he started searching for a younger priest who could take charge of the temple after his death.
It was the summer of 1997. I was travelling through the villages of
West Bengal in search of the famed folk musicians of Bengal. They were simple people who journeyed from village to village, singing and performing.
Over seventy years ago, a 15-year-old boy recorded an anthem, ‘His Master’s Voice’. He never recorded another song after that but the enduring appeal of the song ensured the immortality of the composer to be etched in memory forever.
December 27: Last year, 10 stonemasons had been taken from Udaipur to London to build a temple. Overjoyed with this opportunity to earn more money, they went along willingly. But what did they get there? Just a dirty shack to live in and only 20 pence an hour.
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