Sunday, Oct 02, 2022
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Planted On Earth

These days I once again have the temporary use of a Lutyens bungalow. As we did when we lived on Akbar Road, we immediately planted some trees to leave as a memory for later times. In this house, we planted kadam, gulmohar, magnolias, lime trees, jacaranda and ornamental pines. An Indian household cannot do without lemons, and we like to leave a whole crop of them for others. The kadam I like immensely; its spiky fruit is like a red cricket ball. I remember, on Akbar Road, Mr & Mrs Laloo Yadav educating me on how these are cooked. They promised to cook me a pot but never did. The jacaranda and gulmohar I added for the colour and the magnolias to make it a scented garden. The house already has guava, plum and leechi trees. The British planned and planted a variety of trees, bushes and bamboos in each of these houses. It is my guess that very few ministers have added to their plantations. I certainly know some who have cut them down, and without permission. I know about my old house and I feel sad. The British plantations are at least 80 years old now, and dying all over New Delhi.

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