Kolkata To Jamshedpur

I am certainly not new to Kolkata. Not new to Jamshedpur too. I have travelled to Kolkata several times in the last thirty years, and I like the city. Jamshedpur is a different story. When you go there for the purpose for recruitment, like I used to go to XLRI, you do not get to see the town. On this occasion, I had a chance to wander around in the city.

I landed at Kolkata airport. For some reason, it does not look bright and new. Compare it with the airports at Hyderabad and Bengaluru. When you see repairs the feeling gets stronger.

I was on my way to the city when I saw this small crowd. A political leader is speaking to people.

The life in the suburbs of the city is relaxed as evening falls, people are engrossed in a game of cards.

We then move to Princep. Stunning monument. A great place for meeting as well as spending time alone. ‘The Palladian porch in the memory of the eminent Anglo-Indian scholar and antiquary James Prinsep was designed by W. Fitzgerald and constructed in 1843.’ [Wikipedia]

The ‘badam’ [not almonds, this is called ‘khari seng’ in Mumbai] seller uses a small weighing scale. In Mumbai they use a small measure which helps them sell it by ‘volume.’ It also helps deliver quickly. Weighing scale would tell the customer that he is giving the right quantity. Interesting difference. One seems to emphasise accuracy, the other speed.

We move to Jamshedpur. The name ‘Tata’ is written everywhere. You first notice it when you get down at the station.

You notice it when you come out of station

As I proceeded, I noticed a caste-based union. Only IR man can notice and click snaps of such boards.

And then to Tata Steel. Fire here keeps burning all the time.

But unlike other cities people here can also relax, catch fish and have a quick snack at the road side stalls.

A surprise meeting on the train is like icing on the cake. A selfie is a must.

Vivek Patwardhan