Manu Khajuria

Graduated from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University and completed my Masters from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. I have traveled extensively and proud of my Indian and Dogra roots. I consider Vedic Philosophy and Faith my rock and guiding force.I presently live in London.

Jammu: AIIMS Row- An introspection


To Give:  A while ago there was video which had gone viral in social media especially amongst Indians both at home and abroad. In Mumbai there is this famed system of Dabbawalas, men on cycles who collect and deliver lunch boxes to people in their offices at lunch hour. This particular Video showcased a novel and a supposedly noble concept of people sending back their ‘dabbas’ and signing up for the distribution of any leftover food in it, amongst the poor and the hungry. This was hailed as an act of worthy charity, since the food is not wasted and the hungry are fed too. This kind of charity though has serious flaws. The very fact that to give someone …

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Dogras – The Perceived Villains

Jammu Muslims-Dogras-Hindus-Masjid

If there is an issue which brings with itself historical differences, extreme passions, deep seated distrust, interference both internal and external, a tortured past and a hazy troubled future, it is that of Jammu Kashmir. Those who truly love the State above every existing conditioning of opinion and expected alignments depending on region and faith, put in effort everyday sifting through the news and the depressing discourse to look for a story which brings the gift of good tied up with a big and bold satin bow of hope. Though spotting the good maybe as hard as finding the proverbial needle in the haystack and may involve the back breaking work of picking through a mountain load of hay, but …

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C for Choice and C for Consequence – #VogueEmpower

#VogueEmpower Deepika Vogue

Dear Children, You may one day see this beautifully made black and white video with women who will be telling you, in slow motion and with haunting music playing in the background, all that there is to choice. Although they speak only for women, dear Son, choice is as much yours as it is your Sister’s. They repeatedly tell you that you can justify any act of yours by saying ‘It’s my Choice’. They say that many times in the Video and it reminds me how as 5 year olds sometimes if you did something you were not supposed to, upon being asked why you did it, you would say “just because I wanted to”. You know it did not …

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The Indian Passport: More than a Document

As I walked to the park for my morning run today I crossed the Civic Centre parking area. They had a sign which said “Citizenship Parking”.  It meant that many who have applied for British Citizenship will be taking their Oath and pledging their allegiance to their new Country and her Queen. Hence the need for extra parking space today. I saw many Indians walking in, dressed in their best. And all I felt was deep sadness, a sense of loss and failure. I have always been Patriotic. I almost did not marry the love of my life because he was planning to move to the US. I was one of the biggest reasons why he chose to stay with an Indian Company at …

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Social Revolution and Shree Krishna!!

Bharat, the Land of Great Avatars and Sages, who have shown by example how to live a life of Dharma. And amongst them is Shree Krishna, the Poorna Avatar, Great Social Reformer, Brilliant Politician, and a Teacher of Spirituality. There has been no one like him. He was born in dire circumstances, amidst thunder and lightening but as a beacon of hope as bright as a thousand splendid suns. He came at a time when every body’s motto was Eat, Drink and Be Merry. The Brahmins were not independent and were patrons of the ruling elite. The subjects taught did not include Life Lessons. Education was merely livelihood training and did not explain ways to truly develop one’s life. The …

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A Sense of Ownership and Pride

Surya Namaskar_ Yoga_india

I feel blessed being born a human and a woman on that. I am grateful for many other things I have been born into…parents, extended family, community, country and my faith. I honestly believe in the quote “Durlabham Bharat Janama“. This in no way makes me think lesser of the other gender, race, faith and nationality. There is no sense of superiority, just a healthy sense of pride. Because of my land of birth I was also born into a philosophy and a way of life- The Vedic Philosophy. I do not like to use the word ‘Hindu’ since it is grossly misunderstood and misinterpreted. It is not a Sanskrit word and is not found in any of our scriptures. …

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The Lure of the Land – Some stories from Poonch

The connection to the land is natural and unbreakable. We may go away for a multitude of reasons but it is easier to snip off the umbilical cord than cut away the tie which binds us to our villages and towns and cities….to the land of our forefathers. I have known this for a fact and experienced it at close quarters, having lived quite a nomadic life, traveling far and wide. Nothing can beat the pleasure and ‘the heart will burst’ kind of happiness when I come back “home”….to my home state of Jammu and Kashmir. I saw this emotion amply reflected in the stories I heard this summer during my trip to Poonch. Poonch is also known as Chhota …

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