Parsi fascination

I first went to Bombay when I was 14 or 15. An uncle worked for an antique store inside the Taj, then the grandest hotel in India, and lived in a rented flat in Bandra.

The journalistic offerings of the city fascinated me: the film magazines, the tabloids, the society glossies. I remember reading quite a bit about the Parsis: their contributions to the city, their religious practices, their history in India…

Thirty years on, two months ago, I held the latest Outlook in my hand, and with it came a supplement called Mumbai City Limits. The lead article was again about the Parsis. It had the lovable wit Cyrus Broacha and the pink-looking actor Perizaad Zorabian adorning its cover, and the essay inside covered familiar ground. The Parsis’ numbers are said to be dwindling, but the journalistic fascination with the community hasn’t faded a bit.

Is there something in the Parsi culture that particularly tickles journalistic curiosity? Is it their attire, their death rituals, their insistence on marriage within the community?

Granted, the Parsis have done exceptionally well in business (the Tatas, the Godrejs, and the Wadias hail from this community of Persian immigrants, who arrived in India 1,000 years ago), law (you have the Sorabjees and the Palkhiwalas, invariably described by the media as ‘eminent jurists’), but surely, other communities in Mumbai, such as the Bunts from Mangalore and the Marwadis from Rajasthan, can boast a comparable number of achievers?

Continue reading the entire article here.

  • Rustam

    Your link did’t work for me, but this one did:

    http://www.mid-day.com/web/guest/opinion/columns/article?_EXT_5_articleId=1011905&_EXT_5_groupId=14

    (remove any spaces in link address)

  • Ramachandran

    People now a days wish to draw a circle around them and quote that as religion and wish to stay with in that circle and instead of coming out and meeting others they wish to pull others in that circle. But Zorathshtra didn’t like that. He wish to meet people and wished to explain others and educate them on astronomy.
    I wish all of you to visit the people and educate them, tell them what is life. Prefer avoid using the Leader’s name. We are not qualified to spell his name!
    Let us educate people an Nano technology and Geography to the people and bring out the people from the false image. Don’ t use force. Just teach them. and don’t pull them inside your circle.