Delhiwale | Fare thee well, Delhi | Latest News India

Nadia Khan is leaving Delhi. After six years as a research fellow in Jamia Millia Islamia university where she finished her PhD on “expats assigned to India,” the Srinagar native is herself to become an expat. She is flying later this month to launch life’s new innings in Seymour, a city in Indiana, the US. The young woman is offering her goodbye to Delhi by visiting all the places she wanted to explore. Last Friday she spent three hours in Purana Quila—alone—walking, sitting, soliloquising, reading, clicking pictures, and she also e-mailed her life coach. She agrees to become a part of the Proust Questionnaire series in which folks are nudged to make “Parisian parlour confessions”, all to explore citizens’ distinct experiences.

Your favourite qualities in a woman

I like when women are sufficient for themselves without any external help.

Your favourite occupation

Writing.

Your idea of happiness

Freedom with discipline.

Your idea of misery.

My biggest misfortune would be to die without having written anything, I mean vocationally.

Where would you like to live?

For now I have grown obsessed with Delhi. It was not like this always. I hated the crowd and the hustle. Then I read a little into the history of Delhi, the way it has risen back numerous times from ashes, centuries of rulers wanting to make it their own. I am not done knowing Delhi yet.

Your favourite colour and flower

Black. Gardenias.

Your favourite prose authors

Arundhati Roy, Sylvia Plath, Franz Kafka, Chimamanda Adichie.

Your favourite poets

W.B. Yeats, Amrita Pritam, Parveen Shakir, Faiz.

Your heroes/heroines in real life

Doctors. My father is one and I have seen him give his entire life to helping people.

Your favourite food and drink

Biryani. Chai.

What do you hate the most?

Pretence, opulence.

The reform you admire the most

More recently, driving rights to women.

The natural talent you would like to be gifted with

Painting.

How to you wish to die?

I want to die a writer and having lived my life in complete freedom and discipline.

Faults for which you have the most tolerance

People talking highly of themselves.

What is your present state of mind?

I am in the process of healing.

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