The Glorious City of Allahabad Always Stands Ignored

It was December 16, 1918, when the first-ever International flight from Europe to India had landed in Allahabad. Certainly, a moment of pride for the United Provinces, now called Uttar Pradesh (UP) for being included on the itinerary along with Karachi, Delhi, and Kolkata in undivided India. Allahabad – an already established major political center of importance back then, this incident strengthened the city’s position as a future metropolitan city.

Itinerary of the first flight from Europe to India

Allahabad is one of the holiest Hindu pilgrimages and a place for intellectuals, literary geniuses, and Hindi poets, but a lesser-known fact is that it was also a center of the revolution for Indian independence. An ancient city that has the most correct time in India, as the 82°30′ E longitude that defines the Indian Standard Time passes through the city of Allahabad. The University of Allahabad established by the Britishers during the colonial era was popularly known as the Oxford of the East.

The strong cultural and mythological heritage of Allahabad can be seen at the Sangam, also called Prayag because of which the ancient city got its name – Prayag. It’s the confluence of rivers Ganga, Yamuna, and Saraswati. The city hosts Kumbh Mela – the world’s largest gathering of people and the largest fair, every 12 years. Prayag or popularly, Allahabad has now been renamed to Prayagraj by the government. Nevertheless, it’s also an important town for other faiths who have a sizeable population living there. Christians, Muslims, Parsis, and Sikhs have all made Allahabad their hometown.

People from most parts of Northern and Eastern India migrated to Allahabad for education and in search of a happy, peaceful life. For all the political, literary, religious, and cultural reasons, Allahabad should have been an easy choice to remain as the capital of UP and emerge as one of the biggest metropolitan cities of India. However, the reality is far from what one could have imagined a century ago.

Nobody is bothered about Allahabad after the Indian independence. They can only change the name of the city but that won’t bring back its old glory unless real development happens on a large scale. Be it any party or leader, nobody did anything significant for the city of Allahabad that was once the capital of the region now called UP, and also the capital of India for one day during the British era in 1858. Did you know that?

Most of the development happens only at Lucknow in UP and to some extent Varanasi and Agra. How a great city with a strong heritage can be completely sidelined for political reasons can be best understood by looking at Allahabad.

The city where the first International flight from Europe landed is yet to get a proper commercial airport of its own. It only got a commercial terminal on an Airforce land and that too happened just a few years ago. The best example of sidelining and ignoring a city.

Indian politicians have completely destroyed the city, and no one cares but they ask for votes at the time of the election. Amitabh Bacchan, a famous actor who belongs to this city contested elections in the early 1980s and won. Did he do anything for his hometown? Hahaha, you can find out yourself! To add to that, the famous “first family of India” had Allahabad as their hometown for decades without bothering much about it.

As the ignorance of various governments continued, people who wanted to achieve something bigger in life had no choice left but to migrate to other cities for better education and job prospects. The migration gives them a better lifestyle and benefits. In the past 25-30 years, I have been a witness to such bulk migrations. This leaves the city with some old government offices and courts that will remain here for some more time, as many had already been shifted to Lucknow.

The glorious past is to be forgotten, the reality is Allahabad now stands as an underrated city ruined by the politicians favoring other places where they had a vote bank. They only remember it once in 6 years at the Ardh Kumbh Mela and then at the Kumbh Mela every 12 years.

The worry is what will happen to the city 20 years from now. Will the city still exist then or it will turn out to be a small rural town with huge unemployment. Provided that all government offices and courts don’t shift to Lucknow, there could be a slight ray of hope alive. Of course, our politicians won’t let the industrial setup revive there. Information Technology, Manufacturing, Automobile sectors won’t come to the city, ever. AIIMS is opening in Raibareily, a much smaller town having no significance but a vote bank. Who all will live in the city after 20 years and what will be their source of income is another concern.

#Allahabad #Prayagraj #UttarPradesh @partofalmighty

Love is in the Air – Hearty Party at Phoenix Market City, Bangalore

Love is an important part of our lives and everybody wants love and compassion. To celebrate the very special feeling of being in love, February is the month. The month of love has such a potential that despite being the shortest month in an year, every four years it impacts the name of the year. It’s a month of love, wherein Valentine’s day is celebrated all over.

Valentine’s day, which is also known as Saint Valentine’s day is celebrated in the honour and memory of the saint from a bygone era. This day needs no introduction as people from all around the world celebrate it in various ways, which could be a romantic date at a starred hotel or a spending quality time with your partner by the beach. Many people choose to propose the person they love or adore. While there are some who choose this special day for their marriage. The gifts exchanged during the Valentine’s week are greeting card, teddy bears, chocolates, jewellery, and flowers, particularly red roses!

Many restaurants and eateries enhance their look and feel, and often offer some good packages for couples who want to celebrate the day there. But this is not all, in my view, that day should be really special where you enjoy shopping, great food, alcohol, party, DJ, and above all a great time with your loved one.

Phoenix Market City, which is a pioneer among the shopping malls in Bangalore had an intention to include everyone in this festival of love and offer them with great choices to celebrate. So, they had arranged the Hearty Party event in the courtyard of the mall on 10th and 11th February 2018. It was a special event with splendid performances and DJ night.

Phoenix Market City in Bangalore has always been a place where you get everything under one roof, be it branded clothing, lifestyle products, multiplex, fine dine restaurants, pubs, or a food court. It’s a mall which is spread across a huge area and houses numerous stores. It’s a preferred choice for shopping and spending some good time with your loved ones.

When I entered the courtyard of the mall to witness the Hearty Party event, I was surprised to see that they had transformed the area into a paradise. It was all decorated with hearts, cupid’s bow and arrow, beautiful posters, and all of this was in red theme, which is the colour of love.

Featured in Photograph: Food Bloggers Association, Bangalore (FBAB) founder, Chef BB -Bibhuti Bushan Panigrahy (with his permission)

There were areas very tastefully designed with awesome background to click photographs. Cupid, the God of love was also present with his bow and arrow. People were happily clicking selfies with him and those who were struck by Cupid’s arrow were enjoying it to the fullest. The ambience was truly symbolizing the feeling of romance and love.

There was a big stage that was set up in the courtyard where Karaoke session was ongoing. After that there was a dance performance by Ocean Kids, who are one of the finalists in the popular television show, India’s Got Talent. The performance was mesmerizing!


Later, DJ Vipul Khurana, known for mixing some desi Beats with the usual EDM, gave the night a different twist. It was laudable.

But as the party is not complete without delectable food and alcohol, there were stalls of some good restaurants, such as Café Noir, Whitefield Social, and Bar Bar surrounding the courtyard area. There were also some innovative food trucks and bikes! Some of them were the Smoke Signal BBQ, Indian’s first BBQ Bike, and the Rolling Chef. The food stalls were a hit and people were enjoying the festival while having so many options for food. The taste and quality of food was good.


It was a delightful party for the alcohol lovers, as they had Kingfisher and Bira in beers, and also Rum, Whiskey, and Vodka were available. With these many options in drinks along with great music, what else would anyone look for.

It was time for something sweet, and I love desserts. So, there was a stall of Smoor, serving pastries and chocolates. I headed to their stall to find out what are they serving for Valentine’s. I was glad to find out that they had some amazing offerings for Valentine’s day to gift to your special one. I purchased some chocolates and had a memorable time from evening till night.

Next day, there were spectacular performances by the Naik & Jois Project, Ocean Kids, and Bangalore’s own DJ Ivan, thereby making it a perfect weekend just before the Valentine’s day. The music was enthralling and made everyone groove with it.

Hearty Party was focused on love, romance, and friendship. It was a great enjoyable experience at Phoenix Market City, looking forward to attending many such enticing events.

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Tiger Zinda Hai – My Opinion on the Bollywood Movie

India wants peace? Of course, yes!

Other major countries of the world want peace? Yes!

Many common people from Pakistan want peace? I think so, yes!

Pakistan’s army, dictators, terrorist from Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) want peace? A big NO.

A movie for Salman Khan’s fans but far from reality! Please read the complete article to understand my point-of-view.

Tiger Zinda Hai movie was recently released, and within a short duration the movie has already seen a huge success. The storyline is based out of Syria and Iraq, where a terrorist group ISC (in actual ISIS) is operational and has created a panic situation by abducting a group of nurses from India and Pakistan.

While, a lot has been said and already there are many reviews floating online, my post is about what the movie is trying to achieve and if it’s just a money-making business for the producers and director. The movie shows that India and Pakistan, precisely Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and ISI that are the intelligence agencies of Pakistan and India, have worked together to destroy the empire of ISC and set their countrymen free. Moreover, US also played an important role to finish ISC. A lot of dramatic sequences are included that defy any possible logic and are far from reality.

Of course, movies are not meant to show the reality and it’s not a documentary where you show the facts. However, what I felt is that the director was hallucinating while shooting because they portrayed Pakistan as a peace-loving country. Initially, you might feel that the movie is trying to give a message of Indo-Pak peace. Many common people in Pakistan might not be supporting terrorism, as what we usually hear but it’s definitely not the case with ISI or Pakistan’s army and politicians.

It’s a well-known fact that Pakistan is a country that supports terrorism on its soil and ISI is its major wing that executes the hateful plans of killing innocent people. How can anyone forget that the prime terrorist, Osama bin Laden was being sheltered in Pakistan and very close to their capital city of Islamabad when US forces found him and shot him dead.

Keeping this in mind, if a movie shows that the common people from both sides of the border want peace and they don’t want war or hatred, it is true and will send a peace message to Pakistan’s politicians and ISI. Instead, the director showed that ISI shook hands with RAW on a common mission, which is next to impossible at least in near future.

We all want peace but am I expecting more as a peace-loving common citizen of India, that an Indian movie should have at least a basic patriotic sense and a message of peace should have been given in a slightly different way keeping in mind the real facts! A big question is what is the role of censor board and do they pass such movies just because it has a great star cast?

They could have showed that India wants peace, the whole world wants peace, and even many people of Pakistan want peace, then why does the Pakistan’s army, politicians, and ISI support terrorism? They should also care about their own citizens and stop brain-washing the youth for killing and perform mass-executions of the innocent people. This is for the safety of their own citizens, which will also help in making a better image for Pakistan worldwide. If an Indian movie communicated this message, certainly, it would have made a better impact.

Don’t get me wrong, I am a fan of Salman Khan for almost two decades and really admire his acting and humour. I love the fact that whenever a Salman Khan-starred movie is released, it automatically becomes a blockbuster and that has become a general trend. But I am also a fan of my country and its generous foreign policies for Pakistan, but this has not been reciprocated by Islamabad, and as a result, India has always been cheated by Pakistan’s dictators and Army. I also wish that both the neighbour countries should have peace and the people should live happily.

But this looked like an effort to make Salman’s fans from Pakistan, happy. Salman Khan has numerous fans on both sides of the border and to appease the fans from a terrorism-supporting country, this is perhaps the best effort.

Please share your valuable feedback or comments below.