The Place I belong to

September 25, 2009

I am from Jhumri Telaiya.

Yes, the place does exist!

No, it is not a mythical place from Bollywood movies!

No, I have never requested any song on All India Radio (AIR). “Pandey Ji Pan Dukan Waala” (beetle shop owner) does that!

I have been hesitant all my life to tell people where I come from. Though I have spent most of life in Hazaribagh (another town which needs introduction), but the truth remains that my roots are still in Jhumri Telaiya (and so is my permanent address). Telling people that I belong to Jhumri Telaiya is a dramatic experience as is evident from the opening statements.

Consider this, telling Dinesh (my batch-mate at IIM Kozhikode) about my origins took him to the verge crying (with happiness). Being a movie freak, he always believed that the place is a myth created by the movie industry. He had to touch me (I am exaggerating!) to see if I am for real. And obviously he started treating me with awe & respect from that time onwards.

Here is another one, my IIM interviews (those are the ones I remember as of now) invariably opened with a question or two about the place that I belong to. Being a seasoned interviewee (10 interview calls!), I could chat away for 5-10 minutes saving me the ordeal of describing myself (the dreaded about me questions). You see, being from an unusual place isn’t that bad after all.

Just to wrap things up, I will tell you all what the residents of Telaiya thought (actually I believed in it in my childhood). We (I) thought that the Jhumri Telaiya which is repeatedly mentioned in the movies is actually some place near Mumbai. My grandparent’s Jhumri Telaiya is not the one in consistent lime-light.

Eye-opener: Jhumri Telaiya is a small town in Jharkhand (erstwhile Bihar). It is also known for Mica (a mineral). Hazaribagh is 60 KM away from Jhumri Telaiya and was a favorite holiday place for Britishers.

An appeal: I commend the efforts that Bollywood has undergone in putting Jhumri Telaiya on world map. But I sincerely request the reputed film-makers, not to use the name only in cheap sounding numbers. If you can, maybe you should try mentioning the place in better lights. Jhumri Telaiya is (seemingly) a myth created by Bollywood, and Bollywood should pay homage.



  1. Dude.your style of writing is…..is….(its coming)….is Awe-so-me. I am laughing my lungs out 😀
    “I could chat away for 5-10 minutes saving me the ordeal of describing myself ” :haha. that’s hilarious

    incidentally, i am born & brought up in jhumri telaiya. Incidentally, this guy happens to be my best friend (ok ok ashok u are my bestest friend 😀 )

    well-written by all means. looking forward to more such rib-tickling posts from you.

  2. @vivek: i do not have any problem with u declaring raj as your best friend..you can do it any time and any where you want..i would not mind it at all..haha coz(i m not BABA)

  3. i’ve been in jharkhand all my life and it seems surprising in hindsight that i came to know about the existence of this place in the first yr of engg…

    Saath mein hi pata chala tha ki timbuktu is also some real geographical location!!

    bollywood does have super powers!!

  4. @ It is really surprising that u didn’t know about the place 😦

  5. cul..waise yeh benefit mujhe bhee hai
    m ramgarh waasi

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