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Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Mumbai Diaries Part 3


I went to the Vile Parle East Police Station in Mumbai.I entered the police station cautiously.
There were policemen all around, some vans and of course criminals.

I got stares from many people. I guess they were wondering what a girl like me was doing at the police station. After all, I didn't look like a criminal, did I? Lol. I chuckled inwardly. Yes I was nervous and my insides were squirming, but I put on a blank face anyway.

Ignoring stares, I asked a policeman where I could file a complaint about my laptop being stolen.

I was shown the way to the desk where I could file a complaint. For initial 10 mins while I waited, no one paid attention to me. Policemen were scuttling all around, busy with their work.

I cleared my throat, trying to draw their attention.

Finally one of the policemen, a constable,  looked at me "Yes Madam? How can I help you?" he asked

I told him in brief about how my laptop was stolen.

He asked me to wait. He called his superior to speak to me. His name was Inspector Rakesh Jadhav.

They all listened to my story. Insp Rakesh Jadhav was writing down whatever I was speaking. They nodded sympathetically at me.

Aunty- The owner of the PG I was staying at- was called to the station by the police.

She was fired and questioned by the police as to how could she allow a person like Aarti Yadav to stay at her place without any documents or identity proof.

Now as we all know, Aunty was a superb actress. She cried her crocodile tears and behaved like she
was an ignorant old lady who didn't know the rules properly.

The police detained her and questioned her for a few hours but didn't do anything further about her.

The next day, me and Richa set off for the police station again. There, the police called the person who had referred Aarti to Mumbai. His name is Naveen.

He was questioned in the police station too. Basically we all were trying to locate Aarti Yadav, whether she was in Mumbai or not was the question. Naveen called Aarti from his cell phone. She talked sweetly with him and

The police at first seemed to be co-operating a lot. They were polite with me at most times. I wasn't mistreated or spoken badly with.  Yes, Mumbai and Maharashtra police are pretty decent with women as compared to Delhi or Haryana or UP, Bihar Police who are notorious for the ill treatment of women. Don't want to compare but it's a fact.

But yes, soon, the co-operation started to fade. They seemed to get lazy about finding details about Aarti Yadav's whereabouts. They still hadn't filed an official FIR. They were polite but brushed us off each time we called. The reply was same each time. "We are trying our best Madam"

It was then that me and Richa decided to take the investigation matter in our own hands. We found out that Aarti kept meeting someone called Uved in Mumbai whilst she was at our PG.

It was important for us to find out Uved's whereabouts to locate Aarti and know whether she was in Mumbai or not.

We soon found out a place where Uved was working. Now we didn't want to warn Uved beforehand that we were coming. So, Richa suggested we change our names and go in search of him. At first, I thought she was crazy and ridiculed her idea and called her insane. Later on, much to her glee, I agreed with her and decided to go ahead with whatever she was thinking.

So we dressed a bit different than we usually did. I tried to smoothen my curls to look a bit sleek and Richa applied a bit more Kohl in her eyes than she usually did. Yes it was filmy. Typical Bollywood style, two foolish detectives we both set off. Richa was 'Shaheen' and I was 'Simran' (LOL)

We searched some dingy lanes of Goregaon and finally located the place. We, with full confidence outside and nervousness inside pretended to be background artists looking for work and asked for Uved and told that we wished to see him. The woman interviewing us looked a bit suspiciously at us but seemed to believed in our story anyway.

After a full 10 mins of a talk leading to no where, she told us Mr. Uved didn't work there full time anymore. We were a tad disappointed, but she did tell us that he worked at his own travel agency setup in Jogeshwari now. She gave us his number and address.

Me and Richa looked at one another. We were tired and exhausted but we decided not to give up, especially now that we knew where Uved was.We called him up and booked an appointment with him. Once we found Uved. it would be clear whether Aarti was still in Mumbai or had run off to her home in Jabalpur with my Laptop.

Like two crazy, tired but determined girls, we both set off, finally to search for Uved.

What happened next? Did we locate Aarti? Some more shocking details are awaiting you in the next post.

Catch you guys soon.

Till then,

Dream, Imagine, Be Crazy, Be You.

If you missed the previous part of the series, here is the link:

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Rice pakora

Hey folks!
After a long time I am posting a quick recipe today.

Rice is something which is prepared in kitchens frequently. Sometimes, it so happens that rice gets leftover or we end up preparing it in a quantity more than necessary and we don't really want to waste it but don't feel like eating it either. We usually think of rice as a main course for either lunch or dinner.

What if rice can be used as a snack too? Onion and potato pakoras are common. I tell you, you can make rice pakora and they taste pretty good. After some I saw some leftover rice in the fridge today, I decided to try my hand at it.

Rice pakoras made by me
Here's the recipe to get those taste buds working.

1. Rice
2. Besan (Gram Flour)
3. Salt.
4. 2-3 Chillies (per taste)
5. Onion (according to taste)
6. Dhania (Coriander)
7. Garam Masala (Spice powder)
8.Water (1 cup)
9. Oil (To fry)

1. Mix Rice, besan, salt, chillies, onion, dhania and water so that it forms a thick mixture.
2. Make tiny round portions of the mixture.
3. Take oil in a kadhai (pan) and let it heat completely.
4. Fry the tiny round portions till they turn crisp and golden brown.

There! hot tasty and crisp rice pakoras are waiting for you.

Suggestion: Best served with hot tea or coffee as an evening snack. The good old tomato ketchup goes well with it too!

Hope you all give it a try! happy eating!

Monday, 7 September 2015

Mumbai Diaries Part 2


It was February. I was just settling and adjusting to my new routine and life and work in Mumbai.
It was then that something rather shocking took place in my life.

It was a Saturday and I had gone out with a friend. When I came back to my PG, my roommate Richa Singh and I found a girl called Aarti Yadav in our PG.

The first sight of her was err.. not so pleasant for me. She didn't seem to be the normal village belle. She wore crazy clothes and told us she had come to Mumbai to make a career in Acting and Bollywood and said she needed to stay with us for a week or so. She said she hailed from Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh.

She claimed to be a friend of my roomie's and that's how she had supposedly gotten the address of our PG. Now Remember our "Crazy old Aunty" the owner of our PG who acted in films? She agreed to keep Miss Aarti for a week in a jiffy.

Me and Richa disapproved because we thought she wasn't a pleasant girl to stay with, but we didn't say much because we felt it was a question of just a week or so.

On Monday, while I was at work, I got a call from Richa. She and Aarti Yadav had landed themselves into quite a fight, the reason being Aarti's clumsiness and uncleaniless which Richa had pointed out.

Now Aarti Yadav showed her true colours during the fight and swore a lot and mouthed a lot of filthy bad words at Richa which no right woman in her senses can speak, no matter how angry she is. Richa ended up slapping her which made Aarti twisted Richa's fingers and scratch her arms with her nails. My, my what a catfight it was! The entire show was watched upon and enjoyed sadistically by Aunty who did not intervene even once but laughed as they fought. Seriously!

That evening, when all three of us were in the same room, I did my level best to keep Aarti and Richa away from each other. I needed peace for God's Sake. They threw each other's belongings around the house in the evening and yelled a bit at each other in front of me too.

The key to the cupboard where me and Richa kept our clothes and belongings was also missing and we searched a lot, but couldn't find it. Richa was sure Aarti had taken the keys just to trouble us, but I wasn't so sure of accusing her of something like this.

Aarti was sweet to me and tried to gossip about Richa to me. I listened politely to her, just nodding in agreement so that I could sleep in peace after a hectic day at work. Richa was fuming in anger and paced around the house like a wounded cat. Personally, I knew Richa was right and Aarti was wrong but I just decided to speak to both of them the next day. I was just too tired.

The next morning, both of them were sleeping peacefully as I left the house for work. I kept some of my important belongings in the wooden shelves since the key to the cupboard was missing.

 Around noon, I got a call from Richa, who told me that Aunty had asked Aarti to leave because she was disturbing the house environment and she had suddenly disappeared in the blue without informing anyone.

I smelled something fishy. As soon as I finished my work and returned home, I hurriedly climbed the stairs to reach my PG. Outside the door of the flat, I found my clothes askew and thrown everywhere. Shocked, I picked my clothes and headed towards our room,

Something in me told me that there was something which wasn't right. Aarti and her belongings were no where to be seen.

Immediately, I checked the wooden shelves in the room. The shelf where I kept my laptop and charger was empty!

My stomach churned. My laptop was gone! Vanished into thin air?!! Probably not! I was now sure that Aarti Yadav had stolen it! Phew! Richa was right. The girl must've stolen the cupboard keys too. So much for trusting the goodness in people!

I was burning with rage! I just didn't know what to do. It wasn't just a laptop. It had all the important data and videos I had stored related to my work and study. It was much much precious than any money for me.

I was trembling with shock and rage and fear. Tears welled up in my eyes. Trust me it was one of the worst moments in my life. I called Aarti who didn't pick my phone. I messaged her asking her to return my laptop. I called Richa and told her what had happened. She urged me to go to the police . She was stuck at work and said she would join me later. She urged me not to delay. I called my mother and narrated everything to her. She was immediately worried and asked me to calm down and report to the police if possible. She asked for Aarti Yadav's number and said she would try calling her in the meanwhile.

I gulped down some water and decided to not be emotional about the entire thing. I had never been to a police station in my life to file a complaint, that too alone .

I thought for 10-15 mins, debated what to do. I remembered the people who told me going to the police is a no no in our society. Finally, I mustered some courage and decided that come what may, I will not let the woman run off with my laptop and not do anything about it. I "had to" do something. I had done nothing wrong and I couldn't let the culprit go away so easily. I remembered that my parents had always taught me to fight for the right cause.

I set off alone to the Vile Parle East police station to file a complaint. I was nervous, hesitant, afraid, still in shock but still determined to go there and so I went.

P.S. The owner of the house- 'Aunty' who should have accompanied me to the police station feigned ignorance and didn't come along with me.

That's all for now folks. Will let you all know what happened next in the next part of the series.

Till then,

Dream. Imagine. Be Crazy. Be You.

Au Revoir!

Read Part 1 of the series in case you missed it-