Monthly Archives: September 2013

Place Making in Hyderabad



Any pioneering effort can arouse lots of cynicism. Ive often heard that what were doing is impractical, not “possible” within the narrowly defined limits of our surrounds. Ive heard friends and family tell me that california is a safe haven for these experiments.

Luckily the red carpet has already been laid out in hyderabad. Its very comforting that this trend is already apparent and thriving thanks to a few pioneer species who have already done the footwork in proving a concept thats not stifled by limitations. While each effort differs in its own way we are all here in the spirit of restoring the commons in whatever varied form. The following article is an ode to these oasis’.

You can Find the full length article here.

Swathi Sucharita from Times of India says, “Hyderabad is witnessing an upsurge of intimate, cultural spaces created by individuals, not spurred by commerce, who feel the imperative need for nurturing such ‘thinking’ spaces in any healthy society”

Here Is a video by our friend from over at “our Sacred Space” describing her journey. She came back after a 13 year stint In Berkeley, California. You can find more details about her in the article above as well. You go girl!!


World Cafe I : Hacking our Food Story (mid sep 2013)


Our first ever world cafe event was in relation to food. It was an interesting procedure we have followed on this one and we are inspired to continue this process on into the future as it relates to other Concepts. We will be distilling each weeks pooled knowledge and keep recycling each concept using world cafe format until we can reasonably conclude upon reasonable solutions to enact. These are Great practices in pooling the public wisdom that exists within our community and doing so in a fun participatory manner.

Following is the event description for that day:

“The sum of the expertise of the people in the audience is greater than the sum of expertise of the people on stage.”

-Dave Winer

As part of our world café series we would like to begin by deepening our conversations around food. With the actualization of the roots kitchen and menu in sight we wanted to pool the collective wisdom within our community. We would like the menu, café design and business model to be as open sourced and evolving as possible so we decided on engaging in a co-creative practice as used within the world café method. For more details about the world café process please see the following

Certain questions we would like to engage with are as follows:

1. What is the connection between my food and my health?

2. How does my food connect to my environment?

3. How do I translate my vision about food into a reality w/ Roots?

4. What role do I envision in the larger Shared journey around food?

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Madhu, Shammi, Danesh

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Anantha, Guinni

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Our very much looked forward to World cafe II will be about our cultural forms of creative expression. With this cafe We will be hacking our stories that surround creative expression. We have been working towards the finish of our sound proof studio whose completion we wish to initiate with this world cafe and take the oppurtunity to also have a defragmentation jam on the same evening. We will also be unveiling our very own top secret rastababy on that evening so expect it to be lively, unique and jam packed. Apart from this cafe we would like to also conduct a third one perhaps a week or two later relating to coworking and hacking the way we work. Creative expression and Coworking will be our two main pillars during october.


Sound Specialist Guinni Arora working hard towards finishing the studio!

NVC (early Sep 2013)


September marked the arrival of Shammi Nanda and along with him he has brought us the gifts of Non Violent communication and Restorative circles. More than techniques these are immersions into a state of conciousness that leverage our innate sense of empathy using effective communication through NVC while Restorative circles are a form of violence prevention structured to transform conflict and see the dormant gift that it can reveal. I firmly believe we can organize systems of justice at the grassroots level that prevent escalation of conflict that leads to wastage of immense resources directed toward a justice system that is primarily embedded in a reward punishment duality. Like shammi says it is essential in any ecovillage or Intentional community effort to dedicate a space for creative fighting, taking the time do develop a means to resolve conflict or else neglecting to do so often ends up draining the spirits of community memebers in the long run.. For more Information on NVC please see and for more information on RC’s please see

Here is a writeup in the Hindu relating the offerings he made while in Hyd.

Below are pics from the 2 day NVC workshop @ roots.

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left to right: Harshita Soni, Shika Gandhi, Srikanth Dhulipala, Shammi Nanda

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Center circle: Needs in blue Outer circle: feelings in pink

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Guinni Arora, Harshita Soni

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Left to right: Shammi nanda, madhu Phani, Raj Janagam, Guinni Arora

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Millet Workshop: Learn-Cook-Taste (Circa July 2013)


Shyam who heads Jiva Organics  conducted his first millets workshop at Roots. The workshop was hands on with a cooked shared lunch as well as an awareness based presentation (see Powerpoint) Millets have innumerable benefits and have been part of the local staple diet until recently. Easy to grow, organic and suprisingly nutritious they are amazing substitutes for common cereals (please see attached pdf for a point by point comparison in slide 6).


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Another amazing emergence in Hyderabad is recent debut of a Millets based Restaurant by the name of Ahaar Kuteer, located in Begumpet, here are some additional pics I took upon my visit. Now whoever said progress is a slow process?

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Our Cat



our cat who has been with us for well over a year now..Hats off to incredible Meni!

One point during our journey we had thought that Meni Was missing from the premises. As many days passed we thought she was gone for good. On the 10th day we had found her locked up in an unattended room on the terrace! looks like she squeezed through the grills in the window and was unfortunately unable to come out from the inside. The fact that she survived and was relatively able despite her prolonged fast and isolation is an ode to her resilience 🙂

earlier days


Roots officially came into existence as of january  2012 (approximation). The first 6 months we lived in the thrall of just having an open space. Most of our activites were not too directed or focused but just being  inspired by cohabitation. We were much more like a guest house in gestation becoming something else.


At our friend Sailajas place/. This was back when Mallik, Azeer, WIshall and Rachana were staying @ roots.


Meni Was sent to us around June by our good friend Nina Osswald


Our first communal potluck (pictured from left to right: mallik posanipalli, Nina Osswald, Shailaja Karanam, Dilip Lobo, Shefali Mendon, Sneha Rooh



Below is a sample of a brochure that was made by Muralidhar Acharya. We are not actively pursuing all the contents of the brochure as of yet though we have dabbled with a seva cafe or two. Created around jan of 2013 hopefully one day we can bear witness to all of these magnificent intentions 🙂

Roots Leaflet (2)


One of our earlier posters w/ tagline courtesy of Team Domnic Anthony & Joon Shabbir