Behind the PVR cinema chain sits a woman. Her life worn on her face, with a smile slowly spreading as she watches her puppies play.
Her puppies, or rather her family for the past 30 years is the stray dogs in and around the Saket PVR complex. The newest additions to the family are eight puppies, playfully pulling at a pair of old trousers laying on the floor. She lives in shack made from scrap metals, plastics and wooden boards and earlier, with the money she earned as a rag picker she fed the dogs of the neighbourhood. Now, she relies on donations of food and milk to feed the dogs. While standing there, she feeds about 35 dogs – however other days, it can be up to 400.
She wears a pink sari as she tells us her story. It started in Calcutta where she got married at a very young age and fled from her husband later, because of his abusive nature. She came to Delhi in search of work and worked as a maid for many years.
She proudly admits that the stray dogs have become her family and she proudly looks after them. She doesn’t get any help from Government but have had help from a gentleman, who administers medicine to the dogs. Anything from injections to allergy ointments. She also has help looking after the dogs from two young guys, playing with the dogs while waiting for the bucket to be filled with water.
Humbly I turn away, the memory of my worldly processions haunting me. Amma, as she is affectionately called doesn’t seem to be bothered by worldly processions; she found her family and is now looking after them.
A job well done, I’d say.