About eSamskriti

Why& how ?

I launched eSamskriti, midway through my corporate career. I’m a chartered accountant by education and I’ve worked with Hindustan Lever, ITC Classic and Star TV, in a career spanning a decade and a half. In 1998, I went on a Kailash Mansarovar yatra—and that changed the course of my life. Since then, I have been single mindedly focussed on promoting Indian culture, spirituality and travel.

What happened at Kailash Manrovar? During the five day drive from Kathmandu to Mansrovar I was amongst the most talkative members in the group. After a 50 odd km trek of Mount Kailash, I was quiet during the return journey. Cannot say what happened exactly. Deep within felt very content and happy to have visited the abode of Shivji.

Fifteen odd days after I returned to Mumbai, Ma said my son has changed. This is not the son I knew. Sitting in 2017 let me think what changed? There was peace, serenity and compassion within. My attitude to life changed. Whilst in the corporate world it was all about what is in it for me. Now it was what is it that I can do to help you.

All through my corporate life had this infinite quest for knowledge about Indian culture, history and philosophy. I was looking for answers to questions and now read as if there was no tomorrow.

As I read the question that came uppermost to my mind was - do I want to share this knowledge or carry it with me to the next birth? Based on readings compiled precis on specific subjects, for e.g. India's influence on South-east Asia, that were mailed to friends.

As the number of essays increased a dear friend, Niket Vaidya who ran a web company, offered to design the site. Not knowing what name to keep spoke to Swami Atmananda, a student of Swami Chinmayanandaji, whom I had met once and exchanged mails. He suggested eSamskriti.com, samskriti for culture and e for enabled.

That was how eSamskriti took birth in 2001. It started with 25 odd articles and 40 pictures. Those were early days in the web era. I added content by doing precis of books on lives of great Indian leaders and history. All along the approach was to find answers to specific questions.

The précis horned my writing skills and prepared me for something that was to unfold. I got an opportunity to write for a newspaper in 2003. Then, there was a controversy on investment by foreign media companies in Indian News Channels. A former colleague, Probir Roy, suggested I write on the existing legal framework since was amongst the few professionals who knew the existing legal framework and was not employed by a media company or a Big Four accounting firm. That is how my first article was published in the Business Standard.

Besides liking to see my name in print, got the confidence to write. Between 2003 and 2008 wrote for Business Standard and Hindustan Times Mumbai. Since 2009 written for Rediff.com, Firstpost.com, Indian Defence Review, Swarajyamag.com and DailyO.com.

Pictures of Kiradu Temples Bikaner were published by the prestigious MARWAR magazine. Whilst writing for other publications, eSamskriti kept growing with articles and pictures. The site was redesigned and launched in 2009.The new design was an instant hit.

Many wrote for the site and contributed to making the site what it is today. The number of sections grew to over twenty.

I learnt photography and undertook mission like tours to Karnataka, Kumaon, Bastar, Bodh Gaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Anandpur Sahib, Thrissur, Tamil Nadu, Orissa, Jodhpur and Jaisalmer, Jammu region, Ladakh, Manipur, Nagaland, Meghalya, Tripura and Assam. Every trip improved my understanding of Bharat and took me to a higher state of consciousness.

Looking back wonder how did I get the idea and confidence to do these drive through trips? Here must give credit to my dear wife Aparna. We did three memorable trips that helped me conceptualise such road trips. The first was to Ujjain and Omkareshwar, the second to Mewar ie Udaipur and around. The last one was Gwalior, Jhansi, Orcha, Khajuraho, Prayag and Kashi. Since she was born in the holy city of Ujjain, she is strongly connected with Bharat unlike me a big town boy.

Deep down was inspired by Swami Vivekananda's travels throughout India and wanted to emulate him. These travels and documenting India through pictures have improved my understanding of Bharat.

Whilst content kept growing the advent of the smart phone and need to have a contemporary design made us redesign the site in 2017.

What is it that drives eSamskriti?

Our mission is to 'Showcase India to the World'. We do so by focussing on the country's soft power in the realm of culture, spirituality and travel. Culture helps us to understand why we do what we do. Spirituality teaches us to peacefully coexist, appreciate the goodness in others and realise inner potential. And Yoga is India's biggest export to the world. It is all about keeping the body and mind fit.

As a travel destination India has so much to offer.

Some think globalisation is a recent phenomena. Our ancestors travelled to South-East Asia and the Far East. The best part is that they exported Indian culture without coming into conflict with the local population and use of brute power.

eSamskriti is driven by

zigyasa (curiosity), selfless sharing,
compassion, passion and love for

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