Category Archives: Doongerwadi Process

Requiem for a Bird

This short documentary will be a synthesis of traditional documentary interviews with animation and choreographed dance. It will illuminate the  private  and public  lives of  the  Parsi through their spiritual relationship to the vultures. We will journey through Mumbai and its outer regions, meeting members of the Parsi community, listening to their hopes and fears for the future. and learning of the efforts to save the vulture population.

Cristin Hughes, the film maker writes:
My name is Cristin Hughes and I am freelance producer working on a film entitled Requiem for a Bird, with German filmmaker cylixe. It is a short documentary that explores the once vibrant partnership of the Parsi people and vultures in Mumbai.

This documentary will be a synthesis of traditional documentary interviews with 3D animation and choreographed dance. It will illuminate the public and private lives of the Parsi through their relationship to the vultures. Cylixe and I see Requiem for a Bird as an opportunity for the Parsi voice and Zoroastrian traditions to find a worldwide audience as it connects the spiritual and natural worlds.

We are in pre-production now with filming in Mumbai schedule to begin January 2015. If anyone within your organization is interested in learning more about the project or the ways they can support, please contact me at or +1 845.216.7664

Many thanks,Cristin Hughes

Courtesy : Parsi Khabar

British Designer to design an aviary for the Doongerwadi

Out of the Box

Shiny Varghese : New Delhi, Sun May 12 2013, 02:08 hrs


British designer Thomas Heatherwick on his new project in India and why design is not about toeing the brief.


………..  His new project is in India — Heatherwick has been invited to design an aviary for the Doongerwadi Tower of Silence in Malabar Hills, Mumbai. In keeping with the Parsi tradition of leaving the dead to be devoured by vultures, the 350-year-old site needs to nurture the vanishing vulture population. Since towering residential complexes have mushroomed in the area, Heatherwick has to ensure that the aviary and the stone towers or dakhmas, where the bodies are disposed, enjoy seclusion and privacy, creating a balance between tradition and modernity. …………


Click here to read the entire article


Courtesy : K F Keravla

Exhibition on Vultures and their Conservation

We all know that vultures are no longer seen at Doongerwadis across India. Many of us are aware that the vultures in the sub continent are facing extinction due to Diclofenac.

Will the vultures make a comeback? Will they survive the threat to their existence?

Do come and read more on vultures in an exhibition at the
MUMBAI 400050


The exhibition is made by three Zoroastrian wildlife enthusiasts with the help of a generous donation from Erach and Roshan Sadri Foundation.


Courtesy : Kazveen

Zoroastrian Death Ceremonies

North American Zoroastrian Religious Tele – Class  – Sunday April 21st 2013 11 AM EDST

Zoroastrian Death Ceremonies in Indian Sub-Continent and North America!

Ervad Soli P. Dastur

            A Zoroastrian Religion Class was held by Telephone on April 21st 2013 by Jo Ann Dastur & Ervad Soli P. Dastur from their home, Hira Villa, in Sarasota, Florida.

There were about 34 callers with multiple people listening together in some homes by calling a Tele-meeting phone number. The people were from both Canada and USA, from NY to Chicago and Los Angeles, Montreal to Miami. The class material was a PowerPoint Presentation sent ahead of time to all participants in PDF format. 

After I sent out all the materials for this Tele Class, my very good friend and Past Chief Editor of FEZANA Journal, Roshan Rivetna, was very appreciative of the Tele Class materials and informed me that when she was the Chief Editor, they published the FEZANA 2005 Winter issue on the specific subject: Death and Beyond – Doctrine and Practice – on pages 31 thru 118 with a wonderful series of articles on all subjects of Zoroastrian Death Ceremonies. Click Here to view this issue online. Thank you Roshan and your wonderful associates for a wonderful issue on Zoroastrian Death Ceremonies.



In this class, many of you have requested detailed information about the Zoroastrian Death ceremonies, especially as it relates to us in NA.
To follow up on this request, we have created this Tele Class giving details about:
1. Zoroastrian (Z) Death Ceremonies – Scripture References
2. Z Death Ceremonies performed in Indian Sub-Continent
3. Z Death Ceremonies performed in North America (NA)
We have collected pertinent information from many resources and are grateful to their authors.
We have also given a detailed list for NA of “What to do” in case of a death in the family.

Establishing the Tower of Silence_Banglore

Mobed Behramji Unvalla and Mobed Nosherwan Unvalla Consecrated the Paak Dokhma of Banglore.

HISTORY form “The Bangalore Parsis”




Establishing the Tower of Silence


Bangalore is known for its salubrious climate. This attracted more Parsees to come and settle here. The total number at the beginning of the 20th Century was about one or two dozen, which steadily rose to 125 by the time the Agiary was built in 1924. In 1937, the population rose to over 300.


Several immigrants were hesitant to stay on in Bangalore, as there was no facility for the disposal of the dead in the ‘Zoroastrian way’by use of Dokhma. Amongst them were Sir Hormasji Adenwalla, Seth Dinshaw Cawasji and Mr. A. D. Hakim. This prompted the Anjuman to think of constructing a Dokhma in Bangalore.

Click to read the entire article with pictures.

Courtesy : K F Keravala

Last Rites for Zarathushtis – North America


My Dear Friends:
In this educational audio program:
“LAST RIGHTS”  click here to hear the audio
My good friend Sensei Mobed Zarrir Bhandara has beautifully explained and addressed various choices about the proper disposal of the body in North America.
Hope you are able to benefit from the gift of his wisdom.
With love, light, appreciation and gratitude from
Meher Amalsad

Tower of Silence – Bangalore

One building…On my way to and from the Bangalore International Airport, one building often catches my eye:

I have long known the custom of the Parsi community to dispose of their dead by exposing the bodies to the elements and to the sun. I vaguely remember being shown a “Tower of Silence” in Mumbai, many decades ago.

Click Here for more of this story

Courtesy : Jehangir Bisney

Suggestions to improve BPP’s info regarding paidust in Mumbai

The Bombay Parsi Panchayat has been posting paidust information in Mumbai on their website effective 03-Jul-2009. Though this information has been a valuable resource, it suffers from the following deficiencies:

(a)  Detailed information is not available for the period 03-Jul-2009 to 16-Dec-2009.

(b)  The ‘select’ function provides an alphabetical listing based on first names of the deceased whereas it would be more appropriate if this were based on surnames of the deceased. I have compiled the most relevant information, sourced from using the above mentioned guidelines and have attached the same to this message. I request you to post this on your blogpost with the hope that authorities at Bombay Parsi Panchayat will take notice and effect remedial action at the earliest.

With regards,

Rohinton E. Kadva, Bangalore

Parsi deaths in Mumbai effective 03-Jul-2009


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