An English-speaking beggar and former lawyer!

GOURI SATYA writes: Apropos of T.G. Lakshmana Rao‘s ‘Handbook of the City of Mysore’ which mentions of Mysore boasting of two hotels for the convenience of European visitors in 1915, both being run by Parsis.

The name of the proprietor of Garden Hotel was Mysorewallah. His brother was Topiwallah, who sold topis on Sayaji Rao Road, near ‘Aarane’ Galli. He was a kind hearted person who had Parsi topis, British hats and Mysore black topis in his oeuvre. Mysorewawallah’s Garden Hotel, was next to Ranjit talkies, and it presently houses the Ritz Hotel.

The brothers may be one of the earliest Parsi families to come to Mysore. I think the Palonjis, who operated a bus service, was the other Parsi family, but I am not sure. They resided in the bungalow, which now houses the Mysore Hotel, on the other side of Ranjit Talkies.

Topiwallah’s daughter was an advocate. Bent double, she may today be seen asking for charity at busy places in the evenings, in an old tattered saree. She blames her uncle Mysorewallah for her present plight, leading to penury and begging.

With an excellent command over English, and once with a good practice, she was one of the early lady advocates in the Mysore Bar. Today, she is seen begging on the streets of Mysore!