Navigating a Micro History … …

A Micro history is an interesting path to navigate larger socio-political phenomena down to individual stories!
In the first photograph one can locate the jagir of Kanhaiya Pershad (Kapoor) on the map to the right. My research got me to the Kalakriti Archives and to the many maps I browsed to get to this one.

Map Name (as per archival naming conventions; retained in spelling and order): Chadarghat & Residency_Area 9_Sheet 44_KA.MP.2016.1743
Creator of the map: Leonard Munn, A.F Chinoy, A.T Mackenzie
Date Created: December, 1912
Provenance: These sets of maps were created by the Hyderabad Municipal Survey during 1912-1915. he devastation caused by the flood of 1908 in the river Musi, prompted the Nizam’s administration to devise a plan for urban Hyderabad. This was led by an engineer Leonard Munn (1878-1935). The other people, who were part of the survey under Munn, was A.F. Chinoy as the assistant and A.T. Mackenzie as chief engineer from the P.W.D. What makes these maps much more precious is that each and every thing are depicted in it. The names of streets, landmarks, and even residents appeared prominently on the map. The dominant opinion on the creation of the municipal maps is the 1908 flood, which took over many lives as well as even merged some areas into one. After the flood, Nizam decided to change the future of the Hyderabad city, who could realize the pitfalls of unplanned growth, resulted in the formation of a planning body called city improvement Board (CIB) in 1912 under the able guidance of M. Vishveshwarya from Mysore. The following years marked by the development activities by the CIB such as improvement of the Musi river banks, slum clearance, construction of houses, construction of bridges and lakes, road and sewerage, and stormwater drainage etc. Also, M. Vishveshwarya submitted a comprehensive planning and some recommendation for the future modification of the city in 1930. The net result also included the idea of Municipal Survey, because without survey modification of the city would be impossible. Thus, survey became inevitable and became the base for everything. The original survey which was started in 1912, done using trigonometric methods with reference to Global Telecommunication System (GTS) points, took over three years to complete it.>> courtesy @Kalakriti Archives and Krishnakriti Foundation

The second photograph is Raja Kanhaiya Pershad (Kapoor) in the black shervani with his family. I had the good fortune of interviewing Dr. Sham Sunder Pershad Kapoor recently when I chanced upon the photograph.
Seating from left to right is Narender Pershad, Chanda Bai, Kanhaiya Pershad, Raj Kumari Devi, Urmila Devi.
Sitting on Floor is Ravinder Pershad
Standing from left to right is Murlidhar Pershad, Sham Sunder Pershad, Rupender Pershad and Surender Pershad.

The third picture is my team-from left to right- camera person Sharan Mohandoss, research assistant Sreesh Waghray, Director of Krishnakriti Foundation, Abeer Gupta and yours truly along with Dr. Sham Sunder Kapoor March 3, 2020


Published by Hema Malini

I am a trained sociologist and an archival researcher. I am the principal investigator for an archival research project on the Brahma Kshatriyas of Hyderabad and also founder of I also go by my other name Malini. I am a translator of notes that remain in the margins to bring the user of technologies into sharper focus. I use the term community researcher, immersive researcher to talk about the work I do. In the past, as a Director and user experience lead at Code for Princeton I worked with non-profits, community groups, users, and subject matter experts to identify areas of need. I translated this into conversations with brigade members, developers, potential users, and other stakeholders. The applied ethnography and social research skills got me to meet with a diverse set of people across the broad middle class spectrum in Urban India. Living and working in New Jersey for the past several years has given me a breadth and width of understanding and engaging with people adding critical diversity to my bracket of "users" and experience all rolled in one.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: