The capital city of Delhi is home to people from many ethnicities and cultures. People from all over India move here for better education or opportunities. While some enjoy the cosmopolitanism of the city, others miss the warmth of home.
We talked to some outstation students in Delhi, to know about their experience.
Stella Nisha Gogoi from Guwahati, Assam
Living in Delhi for a northeastern comes with its good and bad part. Many of my friends from home face a lot of discrimination because of their looks. I do not conform to the stereotype of what northeastern looks like to the mainland crowd. Therefore, it saves me the gaze but they start treating me differently once I speak as there is a clear difference in accent. Then there are questions about eating wild animals, and plants expressing the casual xenophobia that people hold. Nevertheless, some people are also helpful and warm but that comes with luck.
Rohinth From Trichy, Tamil Nadu
I have always been away from my parents during my schooling but moving to another state is quite different. The culture, food and language are very different here in Noida. The first thing that I miss is food. I am a hardcore 'non-vegetarian' but many people are vegetarians around me. People don’t judge me for eating non-veg but having a proper vegetarian roommate and eating tandoori chicken doesn’t feel good.
I think every language has its beauty and I respect that but it is sad if someone takes advantage of you just because you don't know a language. When it comes to local commute, taking public transport where I have to explain the routes to rickshaw or auto drivers is very difficult. I have been dropped at the wrong locations because of this language barrier. It can also make one insecure as I wouldn't be able to tell if someone is gossiping about me. I also feel left out from discussions sometimes.
Distance is a very big issue. If we ever have to go home urgently, it would be very difficult. Flights are the only option but they are very expensive. Trains take a very long time, even the fastest train takes you 28 hrs to reach Chennai. It feels like half of our vacation is being spent on the train itself.
Moksha Pillai From Vadodara, Gujarat
I've been born and brought up in Vadodara, Gujarat. So, coming to New Delhi wasn't a big culture shock. Gujaratis in general are pretty outgoing, extroverted and large-hearted much like most of the Delhi populace I have met. The weather too has been pretty bearable for the most part, as Gujarat can get hot and humid during Summers too. What I do miss, however, is the safety and security I used to feel while walking through my city; something that seems like a revolutionary idea in New Delhi. I miss home-cooked meals too, who doesn't! But the capital is indeed a melting pot of cultures and I have managed to keep the hunger pangs at bay by hunting down some great spots that serve authentic Kerala food.