Despite its size, certain pockets of India’s second-largest city are surprisingly easy to discover on foot. The district of BBD Bagh, for example, is awash with colonial-era buildings including the neo-Gothic High Court building. Outside, on the nearby streets, chai wallahs prepare cups of sweet milky tea for smart-looking barristers while chauffeurs ensure the Ambassador (for there are still lots of these fine-looking automobiles on the streets of Kolkata) in their charge is spick-and-span, ready for the owner’s return. And all the while, there is the tap, tap, tap of the city’s street typists who have been plying their trade for probably as long as typewriters have been in existence. Sitting at rickety desks, hunched over their aged machine, they will type out anything that is asked of them; from complex legal documents to CVs, wedding invitations to gushing love letters. The computer is slowly but surely killing their profession but for the time being the street typists still have their place outside India’s oldest court.

High Court BBD Bagh (Dalhousie Square) Kolkata India (2)

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