The City On a Bandh Day

Every morning by 7am I get woken up from sleep, by the intense din and bustle outside. Perks of living on a busy street. But today was different. Today it was quite peaceful. No cars, no people, no stray dogs (ya that too!) – nothing. It was a Bandh after all. Something  that is celebrated in Kolkata with great fanfare.
So I get to prolong my morning sleep by a few hours. Ah! What bliss that can be. Only the ones who experience it will know 😛

But, unlike a few other people, my plans of making it a holiday were not to be. Our beloved didi had released some stringent notifications asking every office goer to make it to office without fail. Perhaps the only day you rue being into a government job. (Oh yes, may be on those last few days of the month too, when you wait for that payslip to get encashed).

So I set out, with a heavy heart, and make my way through the empty roads, on the lookout for some form of transportation. I’m lucky and get an auto, the only one around. With a warning that I may have to get down halfway if ‘something’ comes up, the driver sets off, with his 4 passengers in tow.

The Lone Ranger
The Lone Ranger

Nothing happens. Other than a procession of flag-bearing people. Shouting slogans.
Followed by another procession of more flag bearing people shouting some more slogans. Only the flags change colour.

I arrive in time. For the daily attendance, that is. Few patients come in. More out of curiosity to see, if we are open, than anything else. And we oblige them, with the very essential ‘gaser asudh’ (antacid liquids). What else can bring the bandh fearing bengalis out on such a day !

And we have some intense discussion sessions on the present political conditions in the state and why it’s going nowhere. On the need for the bandh. And why it wasn’t needed. Accompanied by tea. And biscuits- Peyajis (onion ring fries) have become too costly for the middle class citizens in the country.

The Local Tea Shop is also without its regular customers

After a pretty exciting session hence, it’s time to leave office. And make my way home. Am not so lucky this time – have to walk quite some distance before I spot a bus. Most of the seats are vacant. And the roads deserted. It’s quite a comfortable ride- and for the first time I realize, that my office isn’t as far off from my home, as I so long thought it was.

Few Passengers today
Few Passengers today

I click some pictures on the way. The city seems so different today ! It just hasn’t woken up it seems 🙂

Roads On a Bandh Day
Roads On a Bandh Day
What better way to spend the day !
What better way to spend the day !

And in the evening I go out for a cup of hot tea, and some jalebis. It’s drizzling a bit, so that adds to the mood 🙂

Tea Being Brewed

That pretty much sums up the day for me. Another one of those days when you get to see your city in a different light 🙂

(Archya, in his words, is The trying-to-be-global, bangali babu; who is attempting to carve out a  niche for himself in blogosphere, having had mixed results in Medicine Practice. In short, a struggling artist.
Click for his other articles On Blong…Shong )


20 thoughts on “The City On a Bandh Day

  1. I miss Kolkata… I miss the early morning gorom gorom bhar a cha… I miss Gangar par… I miss Dakhineshwar… I miss Dharmatala, Park Street, Salt Lake, I miss the mini bus… Howrah Howrah Howrah !! I miss rastar dhare cowmin, roll, jhal muri, ghoti gorom, chola batura.. I miss Nol bon, eco park, Princep Ghat !!
    I miss Bengal’s Winter.. Fog, pujo essence.. I miss Rosogolla, chomchom, Sita bhog, Misti doi, Singara,Alu chop !!!
    Ever Since I relocated to Bangalore, I miss loads of very simple yet priceless things !!
    I am fortunate enough that Devpurna Talapatra followed me in Zomato and I got connected to Bong Song over WordPress and I get to see Kolkata through your eyes and words. You guys are bringing out the true essence of Bengal even in the worst political and economical stereo type state !!
    Thank you for making me nostalgic and creating a deep withing desire to come back to the City of Joy someday !!!
    Good Job and also heart filled thanks to both of you for following (My Blog )


    1. Yes Kolkata has so much to offer. We try to capture its different shades through our write ups and pictures. Love it when we get appreciated by our followers 🙂 thanks for being a regular reader of our blog ! We hope you find things that capture the true essence of the city.
      Devpurna has another blog of her own too. You can check that out :


      1. Kolkata as a city has a strong culture. It’s a vibrant city in a different way unlike most modern cities like Bangalore, Delhi or’s a city with lots of history. Good effort to bring out some of these traits!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Every city is unique in its own way. But yes, Kolkata does have a rich past, layered with elements from a multitude of cultures and traditions.
        We are just trying to capture a part of that here 🙂 and it does feel good when we get appreciated 🙂
        Thanks for reading our blog @arv!

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s