Abandoned Beauty

Unlikely pieces of art in a secret, lush green field

Text and images: Gayathri Yuvaraj

Khadki, or Kirkee as it was known in colonial times, is one of the oldest army cantonments in Pune. In the corner of an old field in one of the lanes of Khadki, a collection of rusted, abandoned vehicles stand like silent sentinels, watching the world passing by. This motley assortment of used army automobiles invite in only those who can see beauty in the used and decaying. The textures, the rusted hues and the lush, green plants growing around and decorating their body complement each other beautifully.

In the city, just 15 minutes away, I let years pass in seconds, details blurred. But here, I come alive amidst the green carpeted field and the sweet smells of a light rain and sunshine. A feeling of calm and satisfaction envelopes me as I savour stolen, secret seconds with these pieces of art, away from life as usual. Khadki, to me, is a private piece of Pune, tucked away from the main city, that charmingly shows its scars and abandonment with quiet pride.

After the sun goes down, I can imagine them whispering old war tales of blood and bravery, in deep, hushed voices to each other and maybe to those who care to listen very intently. 


Gayathri Yuvaraj is a Pune-based architect and designer. She loves offbeat places, people and crazy experiences. She can usually be found -over-caffeinated, keeping dogs or cats company.

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