Of facades

The town of Pushkar, situated around 15kms from the city of Ajmer in Rajasthan, is built around the Pushkar Lake. It is a holy town, of around 12000 inhabitants, and home to several temples- notable among them being the temple of Brahma (one of the Hindu Trinity). A city of temples, naturally, attracts wandering sadhus (Hindu holy men) from all over the country who come here to spend a few days in the company of God.

The sadhus have a very strict code of life. They remain celibate and give up all the worldly pleasures in search of the greater truth. They live off the charity of townsfolk and their determination to live a life of penance and eternal seeking.

Pushkar, unfortunately, also attracts a lot of foreign tourists. Ostensibly in search of the same greater truth but quite incapable of giving up the wordly treasures. The hotel industry caters to their every whim and fancy- drugs, booze, sex- the works. To me, during my stay there, Pushkar smacked of commercialism and all the entrapments that come with it.

This moment, though, seemed too good to miss. Bleached white houses. Deserted street. And a lone sadhu walking towards the bathing ghats in the mid-afternoon heat. Pity, the garment shops lining the street betray what Pushkar has really become. Oh well, nothing's perfect...


Nikon F75, 28-105mm
Fuji 200ISO
2005, Pushkar, Rajasthan, India.


Kris at: December 13, 2005 6:11 AM said...

was that a sadhu in the pic...almost thought that it was a foreigner...;-), nice colors in the pic and well framed.

Ritu at: December 13, 2005 5:01 PM said...

Till I read that, I thought that the 'sadhu' was some girl walking past the shops :)